Academic Integrity

Academic Honesty and Plagiarism

As a student of IELEV, you are expected to promote a culture of academic integrity. We consider any attempt to gain academic advantage by dishonest or unfair means to be academic dishonesty – it is unacceptable.

What is academic integrity?

Academic integrity is a guiding principle in education and a choice to act in a responsible way whereby others can have trust in us as individuals. It is the foundation for ethical decision-making and behaviour in the production of legitimate, authentic and honest scholarly work.

Why do we need academic integrity?

  • To maintain fairness.
  • To maintain trust and credibility.
  • To develop respect for others.


During your time at IELEV, you will routinely be required to submit assessment tasks. We use these assessment tasks to evaluate your progress toward developing your knowledge and skills. The value of your education is based on the school’s reputation and culture of academic integrity.

What is academic dishonesty?

We take academic dishonesty seriously because of our commitment to our culture of academic integrity. Academic dishonesty threatens the confidence the wider community has in the school’s students, staff and alumni.

Academic dishonesty involves any attempt to gain academic advantage by doing something misleading or unfair. It is also academically dishonest to help a friend or a group of students to gain unfair academic advantage.

Forms of academic dishonesty

The following are some common behaviours we associate with academic dishonesty:


Recycling/resubmitting work
Fabricating information
Collusion or illegitimate cooperation
Exam cheating
Contract cheating and impersonation

Plagiarism means presenting work that is not your own without acknowledging the original source of the work. It doesn’t matter whether you do this on purpose or accidentally.

Plagiarism can include copying any material without correct referencing, regardless of the medium in which the original material was published. This includes material in hard copy (books, journals, theses etc), soft copy (internet, email attachments, e-journals etc), other digital formats (audio visual, MP3s etc) and live presentations (lectures, speeches etc).

For example, it is considered plagiarism if you:

  • copy ideas, phrases, paragraphs, formulas, methods, evidence, programming code, diagrams, images, artworks or musical scores without correctly referencing where it came from
  • copy from another student’s work without indicating this is what you have done
  • mention the source in your bibliography but do not reference content properly in the main body of your work, so the assessor does not know what work is your own
  • change the order of words taken from other material but retain the original idea or concept, without correct referencing
  • quote from a speech or lecture without acknowledging the speaker
  • quote from a secondary source, without acknowledging the primary source.

This means you can be seen as plagiarising not only in your written work, but also in oral presentations, artworks or performances, for example.

Not all acts of plagiarism are intentional or dishonest. In some situations it may be caused by your failure to understand the required referencing. In these situations we will offer a chance to learn about the required referencing and correct your work.

Dishonest plagiarism
Plagiarism will be considered dishonest where you have done it on purpose, or if the amount of copied or unacknowledged work dominates your own original work.

What’s not plagiarism
It is not considered plagiarism if:

  • the ideas or words are commonly used and there is no other way to express them
  • you have made the discovery yourself through experimentation or analysis
  • you have combined the work and ideas of others to reach your own conclusion and have acknowledged these sources in the body of your work.

Recycling/resubmitting work
Recycling involves submitting (or resubmitting) work that has already been assessed without your teacher’s permission and for which you have already been given feedback.

It is fine to build on the work you have previously completed, but you cannot simply copy and paste from previous assignments at the last minute before an assignment is due or to save yourself time and reduce your workload.

If you want to draw on knowledge or ideas you have encountered before, speak to your lecturer, tutor or supervisor about how to do this.

Fabricating information

Fabrication involves making up information for research-focused assessment tasks, such as experimental or interview data. It can also include inventing sources of data, evidence or ideas by including citations to publications that are incorrect or that simply don’t exist.

By making this information up you don’t benefit from the learning and skill development involved in gathering this information properly.

Collusion in individual and group work

Collusion involves engaging in illegitimate cooperation with one or more other students in the completion of assessable work.

Cooperation is not legitimate (or appropriate) if it unfairly advantages a student or group of students over others. It can include working with a friend or group of friends to write an essay or report that is meant to be an individual piece of work. It can also include sharing quiz or test questions and answers with other students, as well as written assignments like reports and essays.

If you’re not sure if the way you are working with other students is legitimate, you should first ask yourself: 'Am I willing to tell my teacher about this?' If your answer to this question is 'no', then you are probably not cooperating in a way that is academically honest.

Exam cheating

Exam cheating involves a number of different behaviours, which can include:

  • writing cheat notes on your arms, legs or another part of your body
  • taking prohibited materials into an exam, such as cheat notes, textbooks or unapproved calculators
  • attempting to communicate with or copy from another student during an exam
  • using electronic devices, such as a smartphone or smartwatch, to access information related to the exam while it is in progress
  • discussing an exam with someone else outside the exam venue while it is in progress
  • removing confidential examination papers from an exam venue.

Checking for plagiarism:

IELEV uses a variety of methods to maintain the integrity of student work. One of the main sources is Turnitin, which checks the percentage of similarity of a student’s written work.

Turnitin is integrated with ManageBac, so the originality of student work is checked both prior to and also after starting the IB programme.

Encouraging Integrity:

With well-structured school policies, IELEV aims to engender an ethical culture by teaching students that they are responsible for producing authentic and genuine individual and group work, how to cite and acknowledge sources and the work and ideas of others, how to responsibly use information technology and social media, and how to be ethical and honest during quizzes and exams.

At the beginning of each year, students are given an academic integrity policy that outlines IELEV’s expectations regarding this issue. The policy must be signed by both the student and the parents or guardians. 

Repercussions of being academically dishonest:

Verbal warning: asking students to explain the reasons for their actions of any misconduct, allowing them to be aware of their misconduct, also informing the parents and involving them in the process.

Written warning: the second misconduct is accepted as an offence and the student is given a legal written warning which is also shared with the parents.

Suspension: The student gets suspended for repeated misconduct. The school administration determines how long the suspension is and informs the parents.

Expulsion: If a student does not show any change in the behavior and repeats the misconduct, then the disciplinary committee take action for the student to be expelled.

Maintaining academic integrity:

At the beginning of each academic year, IELEV has invited the turnitin company to give a seminar to teachers about the usage of turnitin. In the seminar, new teachers learn about turnitin, and experienced practioners are given information about the ways that students may try to cheat the system by getting around plagiarism checking software.

As of 2022, IELEV has instituted a series of student lessons about academic integrity with the school librarian.

Review process:

Based on the recent updates in plagiarism checking software, and based on the perceived needs of IELEV students with regards to issues related to academic integrity, this policy will be reviewed once every three years.