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English Department Statement on Plagiarism

Examples of academic dishonesty

According to WOU’s Code of Student Responsibility, violations of standards of academic conduct include but are not limited to the following:

a) Cheating – intentional use, or attempted use of artifice, deception, fraud, and/or misrepresentation of one’s academic work; b) Fabrication – unauthorized falsification and/or invention of any information or citation in any academic exercise; c) Facilitating dishonesty – helping or attempting to help another person commit an act of academic dishonesty. This includes students who substitute for other persons in examinations or represent as their own papers, reports, or any other academic work of others ; d) plagiarism – representing without giving credit the words, data, or ideas of another person as one’s own work in any academic exercise. This includes submitting, in whole or in part, prewritten term papers of another or the research of another, including but not limited to the product of commercial vendors who sell or distribute such materials, and the appropriation and/or use of electronic data of another person or persons as one’s own, or using such data without giving proper credit for it.

Plagiarism defined

Simply stated, plagiarism is “the taking of others’ thoughts or words without due acknowledgment.”‘ This definition applies to both printed, unpublished, and electronic material. That is, students must acknowledge through appropriate forms of documentation any borrowed ideas or phrases, and all direct quotations if more than three or four words. They also must not submit work that has been written or revised, in part or in whole, by another person. Make sure you always provide appropriate source documentation and ask your instructor whenever you have even the smallest question or slightest doubt about citing sources. It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes plagiarism. Plagiarism is grounds for a no-grade (F) and referral to the Student Conduct Committee.

Reporting violations

The English Department follows campus guidelines in reporting any violations, or suspected violations, of the Code of Academic Conduct.

1Frederick Crews, The Random House Handbook, 3rd ed. (New York: Random House, 1980) p. 405.

Office of Student Conduct – Link here

The Office of Student Conduct is a part of the Division of Student Affairs. We are located within the Office of University Housing in Ackerman Hall.

Student Conduct handles violations of the Code of Student Responsibility. All members of the University community have a responsibility to maintain a level of behavior that reflects favorably upon the person and the University. The University expects students who live on and off campus to abide by local, state, and federal laws as well as University policies, procedures and regulations.

Western Oregon University has a commitment to its students and the community to address allegations of misconduct whether they occur on or off campus. This process is educational and non-adversarial.

WOU Policies & Procedures – Link here 


English, Writing & Linguistics Department

(503) 838-8258 | email: randt@wou.edu