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you are here:   CHS  >>  Welcome to Our Library  >>  Academic Honesty

Academic Honesty Policy

Students working at the computers in the library
An Insider's Guide to Academic Success at Century High School.

Honesty Philosophy


Definition of Cheating

Examples of Cheating

Why You Shouldn't Cheat

How You Get Caught

How We Know You Cheat

Consequences of Cheating

How to Avoid Cheating

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APA/MLA Citation Guidelines

Making Sure You Are Safe

Honesty Philosophy

The Century High School community believes that the basis of all learning starts with a firm conviction in the value of integrity. Dishonest behavior is a detriment to all educational goals. Academic dishonesty disgraces the students involved, their families, and their community. Such behavior will not be tolerated.



The students are the persons most responsible for their own education. Under no circumstances should students claim ownership for any work in part or whole that is not their own. Administration or staff will not tolerate unauthorized sharing of someone else's work.


As partners in the education process, parents/guardians must teach and support the ethical value of honesty. It is their responsibility to share in the enforcement of the school academic honesty philosophy.


Teachers are expected to perform their instructional responsibilities in such a manner as to minimize the potential for dishonesty. Teachers have an educational responsibility to clarify and model general and specific academic honesty expectations.

Definition of Cheating

Century High School defines cheating as using someone else's words, work, and/or ideas and claiming them as your own.

Examples of Cheating

  • Buying a paper or project (print version or online version).
  • Sharing computer files, worksheets, (e.g.., an Excel worksheet) etc., in a business or other class.
  • Copying homework.
  • Building on someone else's ideas without proper citations.
  • Turning in someone else's work.
  • Letting your science lab partner do all the work and putting your name on the final report.
  • Letting a parent or guardian complete a class project.
  • Looking at another's test.
  • Using small handheld computer devices to pull up information while taking a test, or to share questions or answers.
  • Copying and pasting information found on the Internet into, for example, a word processing document, without giving proper credit to the source.

Why You Shouldn't Cheat

  • People's words, work, and/or ideas are considered "intellectual property", meaning the creator owns them.
  • For example, the courts have ruled that individuals could not exchange or download music over Napster because the artists who created the songs owned them.
  • Therefore, if you do use someone else's words, work, and/or ideas, give credit where credit is due.
  • Cheating is morally and ethically wrong.

How You Get Caught

New Technology

Teachers can simply plug a phrase from a work into a simple search engine or "paper mill" site and find where in cyberspace you scammed an idea or paper. Furthermore, Century High School subscribes to, a nationally recognized online plagiarism prevention tool.

Teachers Talk

Teachers do talk to one another. You would be surprised to find out that some students have tried to turn in work in one class that their friends have submitted in another teacher's class.

Teachers Remember

Teachers can still recognize work that was turned in by a friend or relative years before if you try to turn it in again as your work.

How We Know You Cheat

Teachers Know Your Writing

Teachers know how students write. It doesn't take much to recognize what was written by a particular student or what was written by someone else-say on a website.

Your Work Is Too Similar

When teachers read a set of tests, lab reports, essays, or papers, they do not forget what other students have written. There is a fine line between collaboration and plagiarism--don't cross it!


Even though you reword someone else's words, you still must properly give them credit for the ideas you have built on. Don't fall into this trap of passing someone's ideas off as your own.

Consequences of Cheating

The consequences for cheating will range from receiving no credit for that assignment to losing credit in that class. Furthermore, cheating is a destructive habit and can result in expulsion in college.

How to Avoid Cheating:

Choosing When to Give Credit

Need to Document

  • When you are using or referring to somebody else's words or ideas from a magazine, book, song, movie, web page, computer program, advertisement, or any other medium.
  • When you use information gained through interviewing or conversing with another person.
  • When you copy the exact words or a "unique phrase" from somewhere.
  • When you reprint any diagrams, illustrations, charts, and pictures.

No Need to Document

  • When you are writing your own experiences, your own observations, your own insights, your own conclusions about a subject.
  • When you are using folklore, common sense observations, shared information within your field of study or cultural group.
  • When you are compiling generally accepted facts.
  • When you are writing up your own experimental results (e.g., science/math experiment or lab).

APA/MLA Citation Guidelines

OWL At Purdue (link)

Making Sure You Are Safe

When Paraphrasing and Summarizing

First, write your paraphrase and summary without looking at the original text, so you rely only on your memory.

Next, check your version with the original for content, accuracy, and
mistakenly borrowed phrases.

Begin your summary with a statement giving credit to the source:
According to Jonathan Kozol…

Put any unique words or phrases that you cannot change, or do not want to change, in quotation marks:… "savage inequalities" exist throughout our educational system.

When Quoting Directly

Keep the person's name near the quote in your notes, and in your paper.

Select those direct quotes that make the most impact in your paper- too many direct quotes may lessen your credibility.

Mention the person's name either at the beginning of the quote, in the
middle, or at the end.

Put quotation marks around the text that you are quoting. Indicate added phrases in brackets ([]) and omitted text with ellipses (…).

When Quoting Indirectly

Keep the person's name near the text in your notes, and in your paper.

Rewrite the key ideas using different words and sentence structures than the original text.

Put quotation marks around the text that you are quoting. Indicate added phrases in brackets ([]) and omitted text with ellipses (…).

Mention the person's name either at the beginning of the information, or in the middle, or at the end. Double check to make sure that your words and sentence structures are different than the original text.

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