Looking for information about ChatGPT and other AI tools? Check out our page on artificial intelligence.
Scholarship is based on a foundation of honesty, so as a community of teachers and learners, we must hold ourselves and our campus to the highest standards of academic integrity. As an instructor, you also have the opportunity to help your students create strong academic integrity habits that will benefit them throughout their education and career.
The University of Maryland defines academic dishonesty as committing or facilitating cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, or self-plagiarism. Below, you'll find some recommendations and resources for creating a culture of academic honesty in your classroom.
Your best strategy for preventing academic dishonesty is to create assignments and grading structures that disincentivize cheating.
- Set realistic performance goals: A student is much more likely to be tempted to cheat on an assignment they must produce quickly that is worth a large percentage of their grade. Consider dividing high-stakes assignments into multiple deliverables, each worth fewer points, and/or providing additional space for questions and support in class or office hours. The more space you give for your students to feel competent and take ownership over their learning, the less tempted they will be to cheat.
- Offer multiple options: Students are motivated by feelings of choice and control (Patall et al., 2010). When possible, consider letting students demonstrate their skills through writing, creating a short video, drawing a picture, or creating an infographic.
- Get creative: Adjust your assignments so cheating would be more logistically difficult. If students could look up answers online, consider asking them for more complex analysis of concepts. If you are worried about students copying code, have them write a short paragraph about exactly why they made the choices they did in their assignment. Consider incorporating very current events or students' personal experiences into your assignments.
- Deemphasize grades: Consider using alternative grading strategies that encourage students to focus on content mastery more than specific grades.
Communicate your expectations around academic integrity clearly and frequently.
- Be consistent: Make sure you are conveying the same message in writing on your syllabus and assignments as well as verbally in class.
- Explain your reasoning: Share both what your policy is and why you have made those decisions. Talk about the skills students miss out on when they cheat. Discuss why you might have different expectations for group work or technology usage in different types of assignments.
- Discuss misconceptions: Directly point out any common pitfalls or misconceptions around academic dishonesty in your field. Discuss websites and tools such as Chegg or ChatGPT directly so students know exactly where you stand.
If your students know you are fully engaging with their work and paying attention to the assignments they turn in, they will be less likely to engage in academic dishonesty. Some things to look out for include:
- Improper or no citations on work that requires them
- Big changes in the tone or style of a student's written submissions
- Similarities between student products on an assignment where they are required to work independently
The University also provides technology to check the originality of student work submitted through ELMS-Canvas.
If you have concerns regarding student work, refer the issue to the Office of Student Conduct. They will work with both you and the student to learn more, potentially investigate the incident, and guide the student toward more appropriate academic conduct.
Please see the sections below for more specific details and resources that might help you as you work through the four steps above.
We recommend that you use the language and link provided in TLTC’s syllabus template (rather than summarizing the campus policy yourself) to ensure students have a complete understanding of the policies and procedures.
Other language for your course materials
Here are some other examples of potential syllabus and assignment language. You are welcome to copy and paste anything that seems relevant into your course materials.
Collaboration between students
Is collaboration between students permitted? If so, what distinguishes appropriate collaboration from disingenuously claiming the academic work of others as your own? For example:
On reading quizzes, you may review your work with peers after you have completed it on your own to the best of your ability, and may discuss questions to clarify your understanding of the underlying concept and correct any mistakes you might have made before submitting. However, simply providing or copying answers to a quiz question is not collaboration, it is cheating. If you have questions about acceptable collaboration, please come see me so I can clarify my expectations.
For in-class clicker quizzes, some questions will be labeled as open, in which case you may utilize your notes and will have time to work with your peers to determine the correct answer. Other questions that are designed to give you individual feedback on your learning will be labeled as closed, and my expectation is that you will answer that question without consulting any resources or receiving input from anyone else.
The practice problems, which will be due at the start of class each Monday, are designed for you to demonstrate your mastery of statistical concepts. These must be completed independently, and you may not share or discuss your work with anyone else. If you have questions about how to complete one of the problems, please email me.
I am aware that some students create social media pages or group chats to communicate with peers in the course. This is perfectly acceptable for asking general questions and coordinating plans for study sessions, but accessing any platform on which answers to graded assessment questions are shared will constitute cheating on your part, regardless of your intention. Further, using any platform in a way that excludes, intimidates, threatens, or harms another person may violate the Code of Student Conduct or community standards. I encourage you to report any concerns about the inappropriate use of these technologies to me or the Office of Student Conduct.
What constitutes plagiarism? As instructors, we should not assume that someone else has adequately trained students on how to appropriately cite sources and quotes in academic writing, and there may be discipline-specific conventions that students are not proficient with. The syllabus can include training on integrity and plagiarism, and the quiz can include questions on appropriate citations (Department of Psychology's example) and scenarios specific to your coursework that clarify integrity expectations.
Depending on how you may or may not want your students using AI-based tools such as ChatGPT, here is some sample language:
Option 1 (no AI): In this course, my expectation is that you will not use any artificial intelligence (AI)-powered programs such as ChatGPT or DALL-E to help you with your assignments. Any use of AI-generated work to outline, write, create, or edit your assignments will be considered an academic integrity violation. My reasoning for this is that these programs may provide inaccurate or biased information, but more importantly, they do not serve your development as a student. In this course you will learn valuable skills from outlining, generating, and editing your own work. If you have any questions about this policy or are not sure if a resource you have found will violate this policy, please ask.
Option 2 (some AI): In this course, I encourage you to use artificial intelligence (AI)-powered programs such as ChatGPT or DALL-E to help you with some assignments. When you use these tools, it is your responsibility as a scholar to make sure you are clearly communicating the AI involvement in your work. Please make sure to use phrases such as “[your name] via DALL-E 2” (for images) or “This paper was generated with the help of GPT-3” (for essays). Please review the instructions in each assignment for more details on specifically how to show your work.
This rubric is designed to help you self-assess how well you and your course promote academic integrity.
Refer to the Office of Student Conduct (OSC) website for more information on university policies, resources on academic integrity, and how to refer an academic dishonesty case.
You can also request that someone from OSC visits your class meeting, or download resources to facilitate your own integrity presentation.
Looking for resources on how to plan for and discuss AI-based tools such as ChatGPT, DALL·E, and Bing AI? Many of the recommendations on this page apply to AI as well. And see our specific resource page on this topic for more information.
- Heikkilä, M. (2022, December 19). How to spot AI-generated text. MIT Technology Review. Retrieved January 4, 2023, from https://www.technologyreview.com/2022/12/19/1065596/how-to-spot-ai-generated-text
- How should I credit DALL·E in my work? OpenAI Help Center. (n.d.). Retrieved January 4, 2023, from https://help.openai.com/en/articles/6640875-how-should-i-credit-dall-e-in-my-work
- Parsons, J. S., Futterman, R., Goff, S. B., Kaczala, C. M., Meece, J. L., & Midgley, C. (1980). Self-perceptions, task perceptions and academic choice: origins and change (pp. 198). Ann Arbor, MI.
- Patall, E. A., Cooper, H., & Wynn, S. R. (2010). The effectiveness and relative importance of choice in the classroom. Journal of educational psychology, 102(4), 896.