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Academic Integrity & Plagiarism

This guide provides examples of plagiarism, and tips and resources to help students avoid plagiarism.

ACU Policy

ACU has an Academic Integrity Policy. 

Before you begin any course, please read ACU's Academic Integrity Policy

Plagiarism Detection

Common Ways Plagiarism is Detected

  • Professors notice a student is writing "out of voice" and suspect submitted text might not be the student's own words 
  • Professors recognize a writing style or idea from a different source or search for a phrase that doesn't sound like it was written by the student 
  • A plagiarism checker (such as Turnitin) identifies similarities between the student's work and other sources 

Plagiarism checkers do not objectively determine the presence or absence of plagiarism. Interpretation of plagiarism checking scores and communication between students and faculty are necessary whenever there are signs of possible plagiarism. 

Consequences of Plagiarism

What could happen if I do plagiarize?

  • If suspected plagiarism is deemed intentional, it is typically considered more serious
  • Warnings may be given
  • Serious cases of plagiarism may result in failing grades on individual assignments or entire courses
  • Serious cases of plagiarism may be reported and included in a student's academic file
  • Extreme cases of plagiarism may be grounds for expulsion
  • Students aren't the only ones who can plagiarize: plagiarism in publications can result in serious professional or even legal consequences