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Plagiarism Policy

1. Faculty have the right to determine their own penalties for plagiarism for use in their classes. However, such policies should be discussed in class and clearly stated in the grading policies “statement” faculty distribute to students with the course syllabus. (For a general discussion of “Plagiarism,” “Cheating,” and “Penalties,” see, for example, Middlesex County College Catalog, 2003-2005, pp. 20-21, under “Academic Integrity Policy.”)

2. The Department recommends, however, that students who, in fact, intentionally plagiarize should receive an “F” on the plagiarized paper. 

3. In cases when an entire paper is plagiarized or when the student represents another student’s paper as his or her own, the instructor may assign an “F” for the course. At any rate, students who repeat the offense should receive an “F” for the course and can be charged with a violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

4. Students who have received “advance” or “pirated” copies of final exams or re-tests (developmental courses) should be failed for the course.

Faculty should be aware of the problem of inadvertent plagiarism and distinguish between inadvertent and intentional plagiarism when explaining this problem to their students. This distinction might easily be examined, in class, in English 121/122 when faculty teach the research paper, but all instructors of English Department writing and reading courses should, when relevant, point out the distinction. Instructors should also explain ways to avoid inadvertent plagiarism.