Background & Philosophy
The IB Learner Profile is the foundation of the Diploma Programme; it is also the cornerstone of R.E. Mountain Secondary School’s Academic Honesty Policy. In our efforts to maintain and uphold academic integrity, the faculty encourages our students to be:
- Inquirers, who acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research
- Knowledgeable, who explore concepts, ideas and issues
- Principled, who act with integrity and honesty and take responsibility for their own actions
- Open-minded, who are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and
- Risk takers, who are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs.
These qualities, when applied to learning and student work, will establish skills and behaviours that support good practices to be found in the classroom, in homework and in examinations. The good practices are introduced, modelled and used across the DP classrooms. These practices are also clearly articulated via the DP Parent & Student Handbook.
Our expectations and best practices are set out below: The academically honest student:
- cite source material in a formal and appropriate manner
- use direct quotations appropriately
- understand the concept of plagiarism
- understand the consequences of cheating regarding both school-based work and external examinations and assessments
- acknowledge explicitly and appropriately help provided by another person
- follow all exam rules.
In a cohesive and comprehensive way, students will receive direct instruction in the following areas through our Teacher Librarian:
- The rules for acknowledging source material based on standard practice (regarding such areas as footnotes and bibliographies)
- Research writing techniques
- Data gathering techniques
- The planning, preparation and execution of research writing assignments, and
- Considering bias in reference material
The academically honest student:
- copy the internal assessment work of other students;
- give another student his/her work to copy;
- use notes during a test unless allowed by the teacher or permitted by the examination rules;
- do homework for another student;
- present material written by another student as his/her own;
- purchase and submit pieces written by someone else;
- write essays for other students; or
- present artistic or creative work in any medium that has literally been reproduced except in a manner allowed by the teacher or permitted by the examination rules.
Cheating is defined as using dishonest methods to gain an advantage. This includes utilizing any kind of secretive means of gaining information for use on quizzes, tests or homework. Plagiarism is defined as stealing and passing off the ideas and words of another as one’s own and/or using a created production without crediting the source. Cheating and plagiarism are serious offences. Cheating and plagiarism do not reflect the high standards of character, citizenship and integrity so highly valued at R.E. Mountain Secondary School Academic misconduct of any kind undermines the learning environment and will not be tolerated at R.E. Mountain Secondary School.
Violations of Academic Honesty will be divided into three levels. These levels are determined by the importance of the assignment and premeditation of the student. Level One: Violations will be dealt with by the teacher privately with the student and will be reported to the Coordinator. Students who are caught cheating or plagiarizing will receive a zero on the suspect assignment. Parents may be contacted in these situations. Level One violations include [but are not limited to]:
- copying homework
- looking at another’s test or quiz
- letting another student look on a test or a quiz
- using other secretive methods of receiving or giving answers on a test or quiz
- taking information from another source that is not properly cited, and
- working with others on an assignment that was meant to be done individually.
A second Level One violation will be considered a Level Two violation and will be dealt with accordingly. Level Two: Violations are severe and will be dealt with by the teacher, the Coordinator and the administration. Parents will be contacted in these situations. Level Two violations include, but are not limited to:
- copying papers from the Internet, other publications, or other students
- taking any part of a test to use or give to others
- submitting a computer program that has been developed by another
These violations are considered theft; therefore, any student who is guilty of a Level Two violation will receive a zero on the suspect assignment but must still meet the minimum requirements of the course by rewriting the assignment according to teacher specifications. The points on this assignment will not be added to the student’s score. Further consequences may include suspension from the class or suspension from the IB Diploma Programme. Students may also be precluded from receiving recognition for good citizenship (Service Award) or high academic standing (Honour Roll or Passport to Education stamps). Exclusion from extra-curricular activities, such as dances, sports activities or other school-sanctioned events which demand social integrity may also be considered. Level Three: Level Three violations are extreme and will be dealt with by the Administration of the school. Level Three violations include [but are not limited to]:
- stealing examinations
- altering grades on a computer database
Sanctions would include [but are not limited to] removal from the IB Diploma Programme and from R.E. Mountain Secondary School.
Students and parents are required to sign the academic honesty policy to indicate their understanding of its contents. The form can be downloaded HERE.
Note: Parts of this document itself are a modification of policies currently used at R.E. Mountain Secondary School as well as in IB Schools around the world. Principal outside sources include Carson Graham Secondary School, East Hartford High School and Beijing City International School.