Academic Integrity Strategies for Faculty

  • Include a brief statement about academic integrity on your syllabus, as relevant to your discipline.
  • Encourage discussion in class about academic integrity and plagiarism, and allow students to ask questions about appropriate use of sources.
  • Monitor how students are learning — do they understand the material? Do they know exactly what you expect of them in the course? This may be done through class journals, in-class assignments involving low-stakes writing, or online discussion threads. It will give you a sense of the students’ writing styles as well, which you can compare later with their submitted work.
  • If you assign a big term project/paper, guide students through its stages, including research and drafts — emphasize the assignment’s stages and the process of putting it together.
  • Ask students to write a short report about their research or an annotated bibliography to accompany the assignment.
  • Structure student research and guide them in learning to perform it — for example, suggest or assign useful resources (books, articles, links, databases).
  • Consider multiple, small-scale assignments instead of one term project/paper due at the end of the semester.
  • Consider alternatives to the multiple-choice exam: What is the pedagogical value of the multiple-choice exam? How can you assess students’ progress in a way that encourages them to think critically and apply what they are learning?
  • Assignments that are specific, closely related to class discussions, or involve a comparison can help deter plagiarism, since material is less likely to be found online that conforms to it exactly.

For additional information and links to other Academic Integrity related resources available online, please see links below.

Academic Integrity Resources



  • Blum, Susan D. My word! : plagiarism and college culture. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2009. – Blum brings great care and compassion to her discussion of plagiarism. She generously draws on student interview segments throughout “My Word!” to illuminate today’s campus climate–Cathy Small, author “My Freshman Year.”
  • Decoo, Wilfried. Crisis on Campus: Confronting Academic Misconduct. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2002. – Very useful with a good bibliography for the sciences. Explores plagiarism in academic disciplines by professionals as well as students.
  • Eisner, Caroline. Originality, imitation, and plagiarism: teaching writing in the digital age. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press and University of Michigan Library, c2008. – This collection is a timely intervention in national debates about what constitutes original or plagiarized writing in the digital age. Somewhat ironically, the Internet makes it both easier to copy and easier to detect copying.
  • Gilmore, Barry. Plagiarism: why it happens? How to prevent it. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2008. – Copycats aren’t all the same. Some are dishonest, some merely confused. Barry Gilmore presents a full menu of strategies for prevention. It tells you how to turn writing’s worst offense into a powerful teaching moment.
  • Gilmore, Harry. Plagiarism: a how-not-to guide for students. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, c2009. – Plagiarism isn’t acceptable, plain and simple. What’s not so concrete is what exactly plagiarism is, how it happens, and how to avoid it.
  • Harris, Robert A. The Plagiarism Handbook. Los Angeles, CA: Pyrczak Publishing, 2001. – A practical guide geared mostly for instructors; includes suggestions for assignments and other teaching resources.
  • Lathrop, Ann. Guiding students from cheating and plagiarism to honesty and integrity: strategies for change. Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2005. – Lathrop and Foss call for a change in school culture from one that ignores or tolerates cheating to one in which every effort is made to value, encourage and support honesty. They offer quick and practical ideas that can be used in the classroom or at home.
  • Mallon, Thomas. Stolen Words. New York: Ticknor and Fields, 1989. New Afterward, 2001. – A well-known book on plagiarism, with a broad historical background that is relevant mostly for literary disciplines.
  • Roberts, Tim S. Student plagiarism in an online world: problems and solutions. Hershey, PA : Information Science Reference, c2008. – The 16 articles here explain the reasons for the stupendous rise in plagiarism, including student perceptions, lecturer attitudes and commercial interests, facets of plagiarism particular to international students, and detection programs.
  • Sherman, Brad and Alain Strowel, eds. Of Authors and Origins: Essays on Copyright Law. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994. – Includes essays that explore ideas of authorship and copyright in history.
  • Sutherland-Smith, Wendy. Plagiarism, the Internet, and student learning: improving academic integrity. New York: Routledge, 2008. – Given the ubiquitous nature of the Internet, student plagiarism is guaranteed; given the availability of anti-plagiarism software and sharp-eyed graders, it is likely to be detected. But how can educators stop the endless cycle of commission and detection?