Teaching Essentials

Types of Academic Misconduct

Any behaviour that does not allow the College to fairly evaluate a student’s knowledge, skills and abilities in relation to assigned course work and assessment, including behaviours to gain an unfair academic advantage, may be considered academic misconduct.

The S4 Academic Integrity policy defines the types of academic misconduct behaviours. This knowledge helps everyone make better choices and learn with integrity.

Click on each type of misconduct for more information.


  • Representing the words, ideas, research, or data created by, or belonging to, someone else as if it were your own.
  • Plagiarism may range from close imitation or paraphrasing the thoughts of another, to the submission of an entire academic work created by someone else.
  • All forms of plagiarism share a common element: material presented as your own original academic work, without acknowledgement, use of quotation marks, citations, or other references deemed appropriate by College staff.
  • Plagiarism also includes submitting the same work for credit in more than one course. If you want to submit work prepared for another course, you must receive instructor permission first.  

How to avoid plagiarism

  • Be truthful about the source of your ideas
  • Give credit to the owner or creator of words, photos, art, music etc.
  • Learn the citation methods required in your area of study
  • Keep track of your sources as you gather information
  • Create and submit original work for every assignment


  • The use or distribution, or the attempted use or distribution, of unauthorized materials, equipment, information, or study aids when engaged in academic work.
  • Cheating includes being in possession of unauthorized material during testing, behaviour such as copying from another student, impersonation of a student in an examination or test, disguising one’s own identity, or any other act by which a student attempts to misrepresent their demonstration of academic skills or knowledge. 

How to avoid cheating

  • Accept your abilities and limitations and put forward your best efforts to improve
  • Put your effort into learning, rather than shortcuts
  • Do not share your individual assessments with other students
  • Walk away from classmates who ask you to help them cheat
  • Recognize that helping others cheat lowers the standard for graduates in your program

False or Misleading Representation

  • Misrepresenting, exaggerating, withholding information or providing any false information for academic or financial benefit. 
  • It may involve disclosing false, or withholding accurate, information in communication with College staff during the course of a student’s studies or in the application process.
  • It may involve falsifying research, data or information submitted as academic work. It may further involve forging or falsifying official College documents, such as grade reports, transcripts or other records.

How to avoid false or misleading representation.

  • Represent yourself, your abilities and your challenges honestly
  • Do not present untruths as facts
  • Do not present false or made up ideas as research
  • Take responsibility for your own actions

Accommodation under False Pretenses

  • Misrepresentation in order to receive any academic accommodation on disability-related or compassionate grounds.
  • This may include obtaining medical or other certificates under false or misleading pretenses, altering medical or other certificates or presenting them in a manner meant to deceive to receive accommodation.

How to avoid accommodation under false pretenses

  • Accept your challenges and limitations honestly
  • Do not abuse the supports that do not apply to you


  • Carrying out, or attempting to carry out, an agreement with any other person to commit an act of academic misconduct.

How to avoid collusion

  • Do not make plans with others to cheat
  • Hold yourself accountable for your actions
  • Have the courage to say no to inappropriate requests
  • Create and respect personal boundaries

Unauthorized Collaboration

  • Submitting academic work that was created in collaboration with any other person, when such collaboration did not have the instructor’s approval.

How to avoid unauthorized collaboration

  • Follow guidelines for individual and group work
  • Do not seek out others to do your work for you
  • Do not share your individual assessments with other students


The deliberate destruction, disruption or tampering of another person’s academic work or learning environment.

How to avoid sabotage:

  • Address feelings of jealousy and anger in healthy ways
  • Allow others the right to success
  • Recognize that sabotage can affect your reputation for a long time