Aug 24 • 4 min read

Learning authentically. What does that mean? In practice, it means being an advocate for your education and producing work that is honest, engaging and original. There are many paths you can choose as you produce your schoolwork, but the Fox School hopes our students use media literacy to understand what it means to produce your own work without plagiarism, or undocumented and potentially, prohibited sources. 

Carly Papenberg, director of instructional design for Online and Digital Learning and Matthew Kunkle, senior associate director of Analytics and Accreditation, share tips students can keep in mind. 

Review the policies

Temple has a long and robust academic honesty policy that describes plagiarism, cheating and what academic honesty and impropriety include. Understand what these are and ask questions. Know what you value, what the course, school and university value and what’s at stake should you violate the policy. 

Be open to discussing academic integrity, how you can learn and what it means to create authentic work with the policies that are in place.

Understand your motivation

What keeps you engaged when learning? 

Look closely at each course and identify how you personally connect with the topics and concepts. Even if it’s small, consider takeaways you will walk away with from each course and how they apply to your life and future work. Let this one topic, idea or assignment propel your academic prowess to learn more and apply to what you currently do or hope to in the future. 

If you can’t find a connection, try working with your faculty to identify an area that you are interested in and how you can tie it to the course curriculum. While most courses are often structured carefully, see what you can do to help connect and showcase your knowledge. This may mean bringing in other articles or connecting to previous classes and concepts to demonstrate your desire to connect with the material. 

Reinforce an environment of trust

It’s easy to disengage from a course. Try and connect in classes; participate in discussions and ask questions. The more engaged you are, the more motivated you become. 

Remember, professors want students to participate. If you don’t feel comfortable talking in class, explore why. Many students may feel that talking in class is “intimidating.” By reading the assigned materials, engaging in the discussion and participating in group work, you can create an environment where you feel comfortable talking. The more your professors and peers know you are present and engaged, the easier it is to create an environment of trust and comfort. 

Be ready for exams 

Not every class will require exams, but many do. As you prepare for your exams, keep in mind that faculty are designing tests with learning in mind. Simply reviewing previous exams or cramming at the last minute will not help you to meet the course goals or achieve the grade you want. Internalize the material, ask questions and understand what is required of each exam. 

Many exams will now be online even if you are taking an in-person class. Make sure you are comfortable with Canvas (where most exams will be housed) and know how to navigate the settings to access your quiz or test. 

Canvas provides a lot of testing options for faculty which promote authentic learning to avoid collusion. Keep these exam tips in mind. 

Question pools: Faculty are building question pools for their exams. This means that your exam will not be the same as someone else’s. With large pools that randomly select questions and the order they are presented, know that your exam will not look like the person next to you or who may have taken it before you in a similar class. 

Question updates: Be aware that similar questions to what you have seen on a quiz or previous exam may be present. But before you answer, really read the question as numbers and options may have changed. 

One question at a time: Some exams will require students to address one question at a time rather than seeing all questions at once. This is a tactic to limit collusion but can be frustrating. To ensure you are prepared, look at your time remaining closely and identify if you can go back to a question or if you do not have that option. Knowing your material well is important when these options are in place so that you can use your time wisely during the exam.

Proctoring: There are different types of proctoring. If your class is in person, your professor may monitor you taking your exam. If your course is online, you may need to take your exam live during a class period or during a specific time frame while logged into a recorded Zoom session. You may also be subject to Proctorio in an online class. Read your syllabus closely and understand how your exams will be assessed. Speak with your professors about concerns. Know that different types of proctoring are used not to blame students or expect to cheat but to avoid issues. Follow the rules and ask questions prior to an exam to be sure you don’t run into any problems.

Academic Integrity Summit 2021

Hosted by the Office of Online and Digital Learning and Analytics and Accreditation.

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