Academic Integrity

Protect the value of your degree.

For more information and resources about academic integrity, please visit BU’s academic integrity website.

We can only maintain public trust in the value of a BU degree if we adhere to commonly accepted principles of academic integrity. And our scholarship is only of value to the world if people believe it was performed ethically and accurately.

Some of the rules are obvious, or are ones you learned in high school, and when you break those, you are doing so knowingly. Students tend to knowingly commit academic misconduct when they have temporarily lost perspective—usually when they are stressed, sleep-deprived, or afraid of disappointing someone.

It’s worse to be found responsible for academic misconduct than it is to get one low grade, but that can be hard to remember at 4 a.m. after too much caffeine and sugar. If you have that uneasy feeling that what you’re about to do might be a little…shady… (for example, copying and pasting text without remembering exactly where you got it), PAUSE. Take a deep breath. Text a friend. Give yourself some time to regain perspective. Email your professor or teaching fellow and explain (apologetically) that you will be turning the assignment in late. Most faculty members will only take some points off for lateness, but even a zero is better than being suspended.

It’s particularly hard, however, to be found responsible for academic misconduct when you didn’t know you were doing something wrong. However, it is your responsibility to know the academic rules of your college. They are written in the Academic Conduct Code, and you are expected to take the time to read them.

For instance, sometimes students think it’s acceptable to submit a paper they’ve written themselves for credit in one course to fulfill an assignment for another course. However, doing so without the permission of both instructors constitutes academic misconduct. So again, take the time to read the rules!