Students studying together in the Library

Academic Integrity

Center for Student Achievement

According to the USC Aiken Student Handbook:

Academic Integrity is the guiding principle of all aspects of the educational process.  It is defined as respect for one’s own work and the work of others.  By becoming a member of the University of South Carolina Aiken community, each individual agrees to abide by this principle.  The principle of Academic Integrity and all procedures supporting it shall be referred to as the "Academic Code of Conduct".   It is the responsibility of every student at USC Aiken to be familiar with the “Code”, to adhere steadfastly to truthfulness and to avoid dishonesty, fraud, or deceit of any type in connection with any academic requirements. Any student who violates this principle, attempts to violate it or who knowingly assists another in violating it shall be subject to discipline.  As members of the USC Aiken community, it is also the responsibility of every student, faculty and staff member to report violations of academic integrity to the faculty member in whose course these violations took place or to another person of authority such as a department chair/school head.

The principle of Academic Integrity prohibits all forms of academic dishonesty – including cheating, lying, bribery and plagiarism. The following examples illustrate conduct that violates Academic Integrity, but this list is not exhaustive.

  1. Giving or receiving unauthorized assistance, or attempting to give or receive such assistance in connection with the performance of any academic work.
  2. Unauthorized use of materials or information of any type or the unauthorized use of any electronic or mechanical device in connection with the completion of any academic work.
  3. Access to the contents of any test or examination or the purchase, sale, or theft of any test or examination prior to its administration.
  4. Use of another person’s work without proper acknowledgment of source, i.e. plagiarism.
  5. Intentional misleading of any person in connection with any academic work (including the scheduling,  completion, performance, or submission of any such  work).
  6. Offering or giving any favor or thing of value for the purpose of influencing improperly a grade or other evaluation of a student in an academic program.
  7. Conduct intended to interfere with an instructor’s ability to evaluate accurately a student’s competency or  performance in an academic program.

Only the appropriate faculty member can “authorize” assistance, use of materials, etc. Whenever a student is uncertain as to whether conduct would violate Academic Integrity, it is the responsibility of the student to seek clarification.

Honor Pledge

As a commitment to maintain Academic Integrity and accept academic responsibility, the following statement should appear signed and dated by the student on all major examinations and assignments:

On my honor as a University of South Carolina Aiken student, I have completed my work according to the principle of Academic Integrity. I have neither given nor received any unauthorized aid on this assignment/examination.

Avoiding Plagiarism

The following tools are provided to help you understand what plagiarism is and how to avoid it by citing your sources correctly: