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About Academic Integrity

The Academic Integrity website was designed by the Penn State Berks' Committee on Academic Integrity to convey important information to students and faculty about Academic Integrity. We, the members of the committee, hope to foster a climate of trust and honesty at the college. Through such an environment, faculty can teach, students can learn, and Penn State Berks can fulfill its mission.

The Academic Integrity website has these primary purposes:

  1. To inform faculty and students at Berks about the official policies and procedures related to Academic Integrity
  2. To try to clarify some of the “grayer” areas of academic dishonesty.
  3. To inform faculty members of their responsibilities to communicate their course policies regarding Academic Integrity
  4. To inform students of their responsibilities regarding Academic Integrity

Two key principles of Penn State Berks academic integrity policy are that the faculty member has the right to:

  • interpret the policy
  • decide when to act or not act on his/her stated expectations.

The University Faculty Senate Policies for Students, which you can find online at http://www.psu.edu/ufs/policies/, outlines broad guidelines for defining and maintaining academic integrity at the college under Policy AD 49-20 Academic Integrity. The policy reads as follows:

Definition and expectations: Academic integrity is the pursuit of scholarly activity in an open, honest and responsible manner. Academic integrity is a basic guiding principle for all academic activity at The Pennsylvania State University, and all members of the University community are expected to act in accordance with this principle. Consistent with this expectation, the University's Code of Conduct states that all students should act with personal integrity, respect other students' dignity, rights and property, and help create and maintain an environment in which all can succeed through the fruits of their efforts.

Academic integrity includes a commitment not to engage in or tolerate acts of falsification, misrepresentation or deception. Such acts of dishonesty violate the fundamental ethical principles of the University community and compromise the worth of work completed by others.

To protect the rights and maintain the trust of honest students and support appropriate behavior, faculty and administrators should regularly communicate high standards of integrity and reinforce them by taking reasonable steps to anticipate and deter acts of dishonesty in all assignments (Senate Policy 44-40: Proctoring of Examinations). At the beginning of each course, it is the responsibility of the instructor to provide students with a statement clarifying the application of University and College academic integrity policies to that course.