Don’t risk your degree by cheating during exams
Trimester 1/Semester 1 (T1/S1) exams and final assessments will run from Monday 7 to Friday 18 June, so now’s the time to focus on your revision and get as prepared as you can.
T1/S1 exams will mostly be held online (except for some courses/units with accreditation requirements) and they’ve been specifically designed for this purpose. Whether this is the first time you’ve sat an online exam, or you’ve done exams this way before, remember that you must still create and submit your work in an honest and fair way.
Please avoid the cheating trap – it’s just not worth the risk to your degree or future career. Here’s how to prepare for and sit your exams honestly – and what NOT to do.
DON’T: contract cheat
‘Contract cheating’ is where you get someone to do all or part of your assignments or exams, and pass the work off as your own. This includes asking friends or family to do the work for you, or paying a company that promotes ‘study or assignment help’.
Contract cheating companies often contact students to offer ‘help’, but their services are illegal and using them will endanger your degree. And it gets worse – you also put yourself at risk of blackmail. The people who supply your assignment can force you to pay even more money by threatening to report you to the University.
If you think you’ve been contacted by an illegitimate company, you can report it to the Student Conduct Team, anonymously if you wish.
DON’T: collude with other students
Studying together in the lead-up to exams is a great way to learn. Just don’t cross the line between collaboration (encouraged) and collusion (prohibited). You can do this by:
- keeping your study notes separate so your work is entirely your own
- not submitting work you’ve produced with someone else, unless you have a specific group assessment task
- understanding that working together during an online exam is cheating.
Remember: you must not post your exam questions online or share them with other students. These actions are also breaches of academic integrity.
DO: submit only your own work
You must always acknowledge others’ work, so it’s vital that you reference your work correctly to avoid accusations of plagiarism and copyright breaches.
It’s also your responsibility to complete your final assignments and online exams in a correct and fair manner. This includes not using unauthorised resources in an exam situation.
DO: use legitimate help and resources
We offer heaps of study support here at Deakin, so use these resources to help you prepare. The best source of help is your Unit Chair or teaching team – they’re here to answer your questions and point you in the right direction.
If you struggle with assessment anxiety, there’s also a range of techniques, tip and tricks you can try to build your confidence ahead of exam time.
DO: understand the consequences of cheating
If you cheat in an assessment or exam, you can expect to face formal penalties from the University that may affect your grades and enrolment and, in some cases, hinder your future career.
For example, if contract cheating is listed on your record, many professions won’t let you register to practise. You may achieve high distinctions for your entire degree, but one incident of cheating can see you banned from your profession.
The University is taking additional measures to detect cheating in T1/S1 assessments, so make sure you complete your work honestly.
Our academic integrity website explains how to uphold these standards, and gives you helpful advice and resources. You must also adhere to our Student Code of Conduct and Student Academic Integrity Policy.
Support and advice is available
- If you have a question about academic integrity and are uncomfortable asking someone directly, post an anonymous question on DUSA’s Ask an Advocate form. Your question and a response will be posted on DUSA’s own academic integrity webpage within three business days so that other students can also benefit from this information.
- If it’s alleged that you have breached academic integrity, contact DUSA’s Student Advocacy and Support Service for a free confidential appointment with an advocate. They’ll assess your situation and discuss possible courses of action with you.
- If you’re a commencing student in T1/S1, completing your compulsory Academic Integrity unit will give you the knowledge, skills and best-practice principles to avoid issues like plagiarism, collusion and contract cheating. The unit takes about two hours to complete and is available in the My Units tab of DeakinSync.