Academic Integrity Information for Students


Plagiarism is the copying, paraphrasing or summarising of work, in any form, without acknowledgement of sources, and presenting this as your own work.

Plagiarism – what it means to you as a student

  • If any part of your assessment item is not your own ideas, words or product, you must indicate the source to show that it is not your own work.
  • Plagiarism is not restricted to words but includes unacknowledged ideas, thoughts, opinions, conclusions, diagrams, cartoons, art and practical works, photographs, music, graphs, pictures, statistics, tables, computer programs, computer graphics, visual information from the web, advertisements, interview responses, translations from a foreign language text, using a friend's mathematics assignment, etc – anything you can copy.
  • Changing a few words or images does not mean you do not have to acknowledge the source. Paraphrased material must still be acknowledged.
  • Purchasing/acquiring an assessment item and submitting it as your own.

In broad terms, you should:

  • Understand the relevant policies and procedures of both your school and the BSSS.
  • Ask for help from your teacher if you are unsure.
  • Allow sufficient time to complete the task. You may be more tempted to rely on another person's work if you are short of time.
  • Keep files including all research notes, drafts and a copy of the final product.
  • Never help others to plagiarise by lending your work or computer password.
  • Understand how to work with other students - what you can and cannot do.

Principles behind the imposition of penalties:

  • Any work that is found to be plagiarised will incur a penalty ranging from a reprimand and warning, in writing, through to the cancellation of all assessment results for Years 11 and 12.
  • Students who unintentionally plagiarise must be given appropriate counselling and guidance so that they do not repeat the offence.
  • The impact on unit scores of the penalties imposed for serious and repeated instances of plagiarism will be managed in accordance with the Board of Senior Secondary Studies policies.

Procedures for situations involving plagiarism:

  1. Any suspected case of plagiarism must be investigated at the school level.
  2. The principles of natural justice must be applied at all stages in the process.
  3. Any student suspected of plagiarising work must be given a fair hearing and the opportunity to provide evidence of authorship.
  4. If there is evidence of plagiarism the student must be interviewed by the teacher and the head of faculty and given the opportunity to explain his/her case before a penalty is determined.
  5. If plagiarism is shown to have occurred, then the teacher, in conjunction with the head of faculty, Principal or Delegate as appropriate, should determine the penalty, taking into account the principles and the penalty schedule listed.
  6. The student must be advised, in writing, of the penalty and informed that s/he has the right to appeal the penalty under the Breach of Discipline procedures of the Board.
  7. Details of any case of plagiarism must be recorded and the record kept centrally at the school.


First incident

One or more of the following penalties to be imposed subject to the degree of the infringement: (a) to (f)

Subsequent breach(es) of discipline

One of the following penalties to be imposed subject to the breach(es) degree of the infringement and previous of discipline: (b) to (g)

Penalties to be applied

Any one or more of the following actions could be taken for a breach of discipline in relation to assessment:

  1. reprimand, except in cases where benefit would have been derived from such breaches
  2. the making of alternative arrangements for the assessment (e.g. through a reassessment)
  3. the assessment marked without the material subject to the breach being considered
  4. imposition of a mark penalty appropriate to the extent of the breach
  5. cancellation of the result in the particular component of the college assessment concerned
  6. cancellation of the total college assessment result in the unit/course concerned
  7. cancellation of all results for years 11 and 12 in assessments conducted.
  8. These penalties apply irrespective of the unit/subject/course in which the incident(s) occur.

    Right of Appeal

    Students have the right to appeal against the application and/or the outcomes of the above procedures. Refer to Board Policy on Breaches of Discipline in relation to school-based assessment and Your Rights to Appeal

    Academic Integrity: Student Guide pdf icon (604 KB)