Help to Business Academy Aarhus’ students
Cheating is an offense which Business Academy Aarhus takes extremely seriously because it denotes that our diplomas are neither credible nor trustworthy.
Unless explicitly stated in the examination description you are not allowed to collaborate with other candidates to solve the assignment. If you do so anyway, it amounts to cheating because the examiner will not know how you perform. Example:
- If you submit a group report where students are required to state who is the author of each section, it would be cheating if the various chapters of the report were in reality produced by the group as a joint effort. This also apples if you state that the report was produced jointly.
Not only direct cheating in examinations is sanctioned. If you assist others in cheating, this is also illegal.
- An example is if you write something in a written examination and then pass the answer(s) on to a fellow student in the examination room. This is contributory cheating, even if the other person chooses not use of the opportunity to cheat.
If you need to compile empirical data for a paper, 'inventing' data would be forgery, which is tantamount to cheating. You will not be complying with the examination regulations since part of the assignment is to compile such data and you would therefore also be forging your examination paper.
- If you need 40 replies for a statistical sample survey and you only manage to get 30, you must not invent the missing replies yourself. This is cheating.
You must observe the deadlines set for an examination. Time is one of the aspects taken into account, so if you are able to continue working on your paper after the examination period has ended, the basis for assessment will be faulty. Consequently, this is cheating.
If you take a written examination and continue working another 15 minutes during the rounding-off confusion, you will be cheating.
If you somehow manage to make changes or additions to your paper after having submitted it, this will also be cheating. It is cheating, soley for the reason that you have had more time than was permitted. The fact that in this case, others might also be involved is another matter.
If you allow another person to help you with your part of an examination paper or perhaps even the whole paper, it is not your personal performance that is assessed, but somebody else's performance. This is cheating.
When you take a written examination, any contact with other examinees or people outside the examination room is considered cheating, irrespective of whether the contact in fact concerns help with your paper or not.
If you allow a fellow student or a friend to do coursework for you, this is cheating. This applies whether it concerns all of your coursework or just a small part of it.
If you send or read an e-mail while taking a written examination, you are in touch with other people – and this is cheating. Irrespective of the contents of the email.
If in an examination you work with the assignment under conditions which are not permitted, the basis of your assessment will be faulty as the examiner will assume that you have abided by the rules and regulations. For instance, if there are restrictions imposed on the use of aids – either you can't use any aids at all or you are only allowed to use certain aids – you are cheating if you violate these restrictions.
- If you are not allowed any form of aid whatsoever, you cannot bring a list of formulae or a dictionary. This is cheating.
- It is also cheating if you have written notes with essential information and use them when taking a written examination without aids.
- If you are only allowed the use of a pocket calculator of a specific type, it is cheating if you bring a more sophisticated pocket calculator.
For some programmes, attendance is compulsory. This means that your attendance in class is considered part of the examination. Providing incorrect attendance data would therefore be cheating.
- If you indicate on the attendance roster that you have been present although in fact you were not, this is cheating. This also applies if you get somebody else to do it.
- If you tick off the attendance roster incorrectly for a fellow student, you are contributing to cheating.
A typical case of plagiarism is 'imitating or directly copying the texts produced by somebody else without referring to the source and stating that this is a quote or a summarised piece of work' (quote translated from Eksamen og eksamensformer. Betydning og bedømmelse by Hanne Leth Andersen and Jens Toftskov. Samfundslitteratur. 2008).
Plagiarism is a diverse concept. In relation to an examination, plagiarism means that you include a piece of text, an illustration, a structure, an idea, etc. in your paper as if it were your own whereas in reality it is not.
In itself using texts and other's ideas is not plagiarism. Things only start to go wrong when the examiner is led to believe that you are the author. This means that you must be very explicit in showing where text and ideas originate from, using quotation marks, referencing sources and including bibliographies.
The Internet is an easily accessible source of texts that can be relevant for an examination paper. Also books, articles and other examination papers can be relevant. If you follow the rules on how to cite your sources, so that an examiner never doubts where you found the material, there will be no suspicion of cheating.
If you make it absolutely clear when something is not your work, it can never be cheating, no matter how many quotes you include and how much you use the work of others in an examination paper. Whether it is wise to go to extremes is another matter. You cannot expect high marks if you include an excessive number of quotes.
If you copy – directly or slightly reworded – from another person’s old paper or report or from a source you have found on the Internet without stating this, you are guilty of plagiarism.
If on the contrary you use quotation marks and refer to the source you have used, this is not cheating. On the other hand, the more of the old paper or report you use, the greater the risk that your paper will suffer. Only your own text and your use of the sources are assessed.
You may use notes composed jointly by your study group. But because these notes are not your own but the group’s, you must also state the source clearly. If you simply copy the group's wording into your own paper without a source, this is plagiarism.
You must also take care when quoting from a textbook used in class. Although you might expect that the examiner knows it, you must follow the general rules of using quotation marks and references. The textbook is a source just like any other.
There are grey areas where you might question the need for references. In some subjects a model might be regarded as basic knowledge to the point that you can include it in your paper without any further explanation. If in any doubt, state the sources to be on the safe side.
If you know the examination question or assignment before the examination and yet take it anyway, you would be cheating because this would give you more time to work out your answer than assumed in the examination regulations.
If for instance you become aware of the examination question or assignment before the exam because of a mistake, you cannot do the examination. This would be cheating, irrespective of whose fault it is. If the Academy is at fault, you will be offered the opportunity to take another examination.
If you make repeated use of texts and the like that you have produced previously and used in another examination, you must make a clear reference exactly as described under plagiarism. Not doing so is cheating.
Though this is obviusly not plagiarism because you produced the material yourself, you still have to add a source so that the examiner is aware that the material has already been assessed previously. You may therefore use it for your paper, but it must be clear to the examiner that the material is from an outside source.
Below are some examples of what cheating might involve. Please note that these are only examples, so even if a particular scenario is not mentioned here, it could be cheating anyhow.
If in doubt, ask yourself these two questions:
1. Does my performance reflect my personal qualifications?
If for instance you copy what an author has written about exactly the subject of your assignment, you demonstrate the author’s qualifications - not your own. Then the examiner will award a mark for the author’s performance and not yours.
2. Have I stayed within the framework and the regulations?
If for instance you look something up in a reference book in an examination where aids are not permitted, the examiner may be led to believe that the knowledge at your fingertips is outstanding; however, the mark will reflect the reference work and not you.
The objective of an examination is to provide the examiner with a genuine opportunity to assess your exact performance under specific circumstances. To achieve this, the examiner must be aware down to the smallest detail which part of the performance is due to your personal efforts, and the examiner must be able to feel confident that the performance has been delivered in accordance with the framework and the regulations that apply to that particular examination.
This means that an examination is a test in which you demonstrate your individual qualifications in relation to a specific area and you deliver your performance within the stipulated framework and regulations.
If you or anybody else, by some unauthorised act, prevent the examiner from identifying your particular contribution or if you perform under regulations other than those assumed by the examiner, you cheat yourself into receiving an incorrect assessment – and this is cheating in an examination.
Consequently, cheating in an examination is defined by being unauthorised act(s) carried out by yourself or any other person(s) which alter the framework and the regulations for the performance or which render the performance unsuitable for an assessment of your individual qualifications.
Your diploma is a guarantee issued by the Academy certifying that you possess the skills and qualifications listed on the diploma. This means that the credibility of the diplomas are a core concern to Business Academy Aarhus. If your diploma is incorrect due to cheating, it not only devalues your diploma, it also undermines the credibility of all diplomas issued by the Academy.
Furthermore, the reputation of your programme suffers if one can no longer trust that graduates from Business Academy Aarhus are in fact as competent as we claim. This is the reason that cheating in examinations is one of the most unacceptable actions within the sphere of education – and hence an action severely punished by Business Academy Aarhus.
Ask if you are still in doubt
We only describe some typical examples of cheating. Obviously, there may be other situations that you can’t find described here.
Therefore – if you are in any doubt about the rules regarding cheating, ask in advance. Ask your teacher, your supervisor or your examiner.