Ethical Conduct

  1. The University of Alberta is committed to the highest standards of academic integrity and honesty. Students are expected to be familiar with, and abide by the provisions of University of Alberta’s Code of Student Behaviour. Unfortunately, in the last few years we have observed a substantial increase in the number of plagiarism offences in statistical laboratories in our undergraduate courses. The most common case of plagiarism is submitting lab assignment or its part of another student. The information provided below is to make you aware of the limits to which you may collaborate with your classmates in your lab projects and of the penalties imposed against those who break the rules.
  2. Students in Stat 151 complete their lab assignments in groups of three. Collaboration with other groups is limited to discussion and exchange of ideas. No record of any sort  (written or electronic material) may be exchanged between groups. Each group must write their own lab report, using their own words to answer the questions in lab assignment. The group members are expected to support and motivate each other while holding each other accountable for completing the assignments on time.
  3. All lab assignments in Stat 235, 252 and 337 are to be completed on an individual basis. Collaboration on assignments is acceptable; you are even encouraged to discuss lab assignments with other students. However, you are expected to write your own report in your own words. In other words, as soon as your pen hits the paper or your fingers hit the keyboard, the report and conclusions must be your original work.

    In addition it is an offence to permit another student to copy or use directly your own work. If one student willingly allows another student to use their work, both students are party to the offence and equally culpable. Do not share your lab work in electronic or hard copy form with other students. Moreover, delete all your lab related files from the campus lab workstation after finishing your work and transferring the files to the GPU server or any electronic media.
  4. What types of penalties are imposed against those who intentionally or accidentally commit the plagiarism offence? We have adopted a zero tolerance policy on plagiarism in statistical laboratories. That means that all cases of plagiarism will be immediately referred to the Dean of Science who will determine what course of action is appropriate. Notice that the Dean’s Office does not treat such matters lightly, suspension or expulsion are often imposed. Do not place yourself in such an unpleasant situation.
  5. It is better not to hand in the lab and get the zero than to have a history of disciplinary action and to be on warning for the rest of your career at the University. The percentage you will loose by not handing in the one lab is very often not large enough to change your final grade in the course. In some cases like an application to a professional school or for a job, the school or prospective employer may ask the Faculty whether you have a history of disciplinary action. Think twice before you place yourself in a disciplinary hearing that may affect your whole life.
Statistical Laboratories Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, University of Alberta