Communicating Expectations

Talking with students about academic integrity involves demystifying - making explicit - our expectations regarding purposes and practices of integrity related to (1) What constitutes originality, (2) How students will be expected to maintain integrity in completing coursework, and (3) Where they’ll find specific information about integrity expectations within stand-alone descriptions of assignments and examinations. This page offers links to resources for each of these considerations:

Communicating about Originality

What constitutes originality - for you, and within your field given the range of practitioners and scholars currently communicating with peers and community, as well public and professional audiences?

Communication about Integrity Policies and Practices

How might you embed policy and practices regarding academic integrity in the syllabus narrative you compose, keeping in mind that learners new to you, your course, and your field are the primary audience for this document?

  • Drawing from a selection of learning-centered syllabuses recently composed UMN faculty, and one Canvas site example addressing contract cheating, this Syllabus Statements and Course Site Language document is meant to serve as a springboard for thinking about ways to tailor integrity-related language to your own course.

Communicating about Assignments and Examinations

Where might you outline integrity expectations within descriptions of assignment purposes, tasks, and skills, and in setting out your expectations regarding exam preparation and completion processes?

  • As one practical, easy-to-implement practice, you might add a “footer” to course documents to note “This work is the intellectual property of the instructor and may not be altered, shared for commercial purposes, or distributed in any modified or unmodified form, either during or subsequent to enrollment in the course.” These resources provide “how to” about adding a footer, in Google Docs, Word, and PDFs
  • In Reference, Appropriation, or Plagiarism (PDF), Heather Layton (University of Rochester) combines narrative and examples to distinguish among these three field specific practices for her “Introduction to Painting” students.
  • The Creating Transparent Assignments resource offers short videos, examples of revised assignments, and a template for setting out an assignments core purpose in learning; criteria, tasks, and skills to be assessed; and main audience for that specific assignment.
  • With an awareness of how to effectively Prepare Students for Assessments and Reduce Anxiety we can, as instructors, also work to enhance academic integrity. 
  • Finally, the combination of Test Banks and Academic Honesty Considerations and Online Assessments and e-Proctoring resource documents are curated to support faculty in building exam questions and exam settings that foster student learning.