Academic Integrity: One voice. one community.
The Academic Integrity policy at Dawson gives primacy to the idea that academic integrity is a community concern that involves all members, e.g., professionals, support staff, administrators, etc., and not just faculty and students. It establishes academic integrity as an educational matter with an operational framework whose emphasis is more formative than punitive. To that end, it focuses on best practices, offers contextualized examples, encourages leading by example, and tries to inculcate the notion of academic integrity as an assumed norm.
While, the policy and its related procedures foresee the range of actions that would require consequential follow-up, these are driven by a sense of process that is intended to be transparent, fair, timely—and educational. The overarching orientation towards fostering academic integrity is one of balance, an approach that perhaps makes Dawson’s stance unique and certainly reflective of its mission and culture.
The major components of the balanced approach are as follows:
- Educating the community in order to forestall breaches of academic integrity before they occur.
- Emphasizing the rights and responsibilities of faculty, students, and staff with respect to academic integrity. This involves making sure that the governing documents of the College with respect to academic integrity, e.g. ISEP, are made known to all concerned and that the expectations of faculty, departments and programs are understood, especially by students.
- Making it clear what processes and procedures are operative in case a breach of academic integrity occurs.These processes and procedures must exhibit due process in their substance and their application.
- Positive reinforcement of Dawson’s norms of academic integrity: This involves emphasizing why academic integrity is so important for Dawson. This can be done, on a macro-level, in a variety of ways (e.g., the website, poster campaigns, events,, etc.). On a more local level, this can be done by faculty modeling their commitment to academic integrity in the way they teach by, for example, clearly distinguishing their own ideas from those of others.
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