(1) This Policy replaces Chapter 4.20 of the Academic Policy (December 2010).
(2) For the purpose of this Policy refer to the Academic Board's Definitions Policy.
(3) This Policy provides a framework that defines academic integrity and its attendant responsibilities. It is formulated on the principle that academic integrity is an accepted foundation of excellence in ethical scholarship. Underpinning this principle is the assumption that members of the Southern Cross University community value the highest standards of academic integrity.
(4) This Policy is based on the premise that students need to be educated in ethical values, the meaning and practice of academic integrity in general and in their discipline(s) and field(s) of study specifically, and that courses and units of study and assessment tasks should be designed so as to make academic misconduct by students difficult. The Policy is also concerned with the detection of academic misconduct when it occurs and with the fair, reasonable and consistent application of penalties for such misconduct. The Policy's objectives are:
(5) Each School/College and Special Research Centre is required to appoint an Academic Integrity Officer. The appointment in Schools/Colleges shall coincide with the appointment term of the Chair, School Board /Chair, College Board. Normally, the Chair, School Board /Chair, College Board will be the Academic Integrity Officer for their respective School/College. The Chair, School Board /Chair, College Board may request that a full time academic staff member, nominated by the relevant Head of School /Head of College be appointed as the Academic Integrity Officer. The nominee is subject to approval by the Deputy Vice Chancellor and the Chair, Academic Board. The Academic Integrity Officer in a Special Research Centre shall be the nominee of the Centre Director, subject to approval by the Chair, Academic Board and the Pro Vice Chancellor (Research).
(6) This Policy is intended to be read in conjunction with: Rule 3, Section 7 - Conduct of Examinations; Rule 3, Section 18 - Academic Misconduct Including Plagiarism; the Misconduct - Student Misconduct Rule; and other relevant Codes, Rules, Policies, Procedures and Guidelines listed in the Associated Information page. Procedures and Penalties are detailed in Section 6. Particular roles in the application of this Policy are described below.
(7) Students of Southern Cross University are expected to comply with this Policy and can expect access to information about this and other relevant Rules, Policies and Procedures along with the penalties for and consequences of academic misconduct.
(8) All staff are expected to comply with this Policy and, according to their level of responsibility, provide students with a solid foundation in how to practice academic integrity including:
(9) When any staff member is satisfied that misconduct has occurred, they should report it to the relevant Academic Integrity Officer and can expect to be supported by the University when they are involved in pursuing any cases to their outcome.
(10) The monitoring of this Policy's consistent interpretation and implementation by the Chair, Academic Board will be supported by the appointment of a person to act as an Academic Integrity Support Officer for a period of two years. The Academic Integrity Support Officer will be appointed by the Deputy Vice Chancellor after consultation with the Chair, Academic Board.
(11) The Academic Integrity Support Officer will:
(12) The Deputy Vice Chancellor:
(13) Head of School /Head of College and Director, Special Research Centre will:
(14) Academic Integrity Officers will:
(15) School, College or Special Research Centre Directors of Research Training will report all cases of academic misconduct by research students to the Pro Vice Chancellor (Research) and Chair, Higher Degree Research Committee for noting.
(16) Examination room supervisors (invigilators) should be familiar with Rule 3, Section 7 - Conduct of Examinations and supervise examinations in accordance with that rule and this Policy.
(17) It is the responsibility of students to:
(18) Students of the University have the right:
(19) Students may be required to submit a copy of their assignment or thesis to an electronic originality checking service in order to determine whether the assignment or thesis is an original work. Academic staff, including relevant Higher Degrees Research Supervisors, may submit a student assignment or thesis to such a checking service for originality. The checking service may retain a copy of the assignment on its database for the purpose of future originality checking.
(20) For more information, refer to the University's Electronic Originality Checking Protocols.
(21) While this Policy is formulated on the principle that Southern Cross University values academic integrity as the foundation of excellence in research and scholarship, it is recognised that academic misconduct does occur. In such circumstances, investigations should be conducted and any penalties applied should be fair, reasonable, consistent and defensible. The Misconduct - Student Misconduct Guidelines provide examples of offences and appropriate penalties.
(24) Determine whether the misconduct is deliberate or inadvertent. The Misconduct - Student Academic Misconduct Guidelines provide additional information and examples. Further acts of academic misconduct by the same student are taken to be deliberate once the student has received a warning, feedback and the opportunity to learn about academic integrity.
(25) Determine whether the academic misconduct is minor or serious (see Misconduct - Student Academic Misconduct Guidelines, Part C for examples).
(26) Consider the misconduct within the context of the particular Academic conventions of the discipline or field within which it took place.
(28) For examples and scenarios to assist decision making, refer to the Misconduct - Student Academic Misconduct Guidelines.
(29) It is not a light matter to make an accusation of academic misconduct against a member of the University community. Among other things, it may result in that person being unable to practice their profession; there may be dire consequences for their reputation and employment prospects; and it may disrupt or prevent completion of studies.
(30) Confidentiality is essential in any matters relating to a suspicion of academic misconduct. Any person suspecting a student of a breach of this Policy should ensure that they have read the Policy thoroughly, must maintain confidentiality at all times and divulge their suspicions (with accompanying evidence) to the appropriate officer/s only.
(31) All records of information, proceedings and outcomes will be maintained with care as to their security and will be provided only to those who have a bona fide reason to know about them.