Academic integrity quick guide

A quick guide to academic integrity for Western students

Western cares about your success as a student and in your future career. Studying with academic integrity safeguards your professional reputation and your degree.

All Western students must:

  • be familiar with the University policies related to academic misconduct
  • apply principles of academic integrity
  • act honestly and ethically in producing all academic work and assessment tasks; and
  • submit work that is their own and acknowledge any sources used in their work.

Assessment declaration

Each time you submit an assessment, you will declare that you have completed it individually, unless it is a group assignment. In the case of a group assignment, each group member should be ready to document their individual contribution if needed. You will also declare that:

  1. You hold a copy of the submission if the original is lost or damaged.
  2. No part of the submission has been copied from any other student’s work or from any other third party (including generative AI) except where due acknowledgement is made in the submission.
  3. No part of the submission has been submitted by you in another (previous or current) assessment, except where appropriately referenced, and with prior permission from the teacher/tutor/supervisor/ Subject Coordinator for the subject.
  4. No part of the submission has been written/produced for you by any other person or technology except where collaboration has been authorised by the teacher/tutor/ supervisor/Subject Coordinator either in the assessment resources section of the Learning Guide for the assessment task, in the instructions for the assessment task or through vUWS.
  5. You are aware that the submission will be reproduced and submitted to detection software programs for the purpose of investigating possible breaches of the Student Misconduct Rule, for example plagiarism, contract cheating, or unauthorised use of generative AI.  Turnitin or other tools of investigation may retain a copy of the submission for the purposes of future investigation.
  6. You will not make the submission available to any other person unless required by the University.

Student Misconduct Rule

The Student Misconduct Rule applies to all students of Western Sydney University including Western Sydney University programs taught by other education providers. You must not engage in academic, research or general misconduct as defined in the Rule or you may be subject to sanctions. The University considers submitting falsified documentation in support of requests to redo, resit or extend submissions, including sitting of deferred examinations, as instances of general misconduct.

More information on studying with integrity is available on the Study with Integrity webpage. It is your responsibility to apply these principles to all work you submit to the University.

Avoid unauthorised content generation

Unauthorised content generation includes using external ‘support’ sites or other external help, and unauthorized use of generative artificial intelligence (AI) tools.  Find out more below.

  1. External ‘support’ sites or other external help

    To avoid the risk of your assignment being shared without your knowledge, do not upload your assignment to any external sites for spelling, grammar or plagiarism checks. Your safest option is to use the free services provided by Library Study Smart or Studiosity.

    Avoid using any websites that:

    • allow sharing of assignments or other material
    • reward sharing of material with credits, tokens; or access to additional materials/features/services;
    • provide answers to textbook or assignment/exam questions;
    • provide free sample assignments; and/or include order buttons and prices; and/or
    • invite you to submit your assignment for plagiarism or grammar or other checks.

    Engagement with academic cheating sites will be regarded as misconduct. Academic cheating services often market themselves as ‘support’. Engagement with these sites includes:

    • Sharing assignments or course material;
    • Using online tools provided by these sites to check for plagiarism, grammar or spelling; and/or
    • Purchasing writing services, or obtaining a copy of an assignment.

    Uploading your work to these sites may lead to your work being shared with others with or without your knowledge and consent.

    The Australian Government monitors current and past students’ use of academic cheating services, and may report student material found on these sites or other forms of engagement to universities.

    Current students with items found on academic cheating sites face sanctions under the Student Misconduct Rule. Outcomes for graduates may include revocation of award. For more information see

    More advice can be found on the Study with Integrity webpage.

  2. Unauthorised use of generative artificial intelligence (AI):

The use of generative AI as a tool is restricted in some subjects and some assessment tasks. Expectations regarding the use of generative AI tools may vary in different assessment tasks and in different subjects. If unsure about using generative AI tools in a subject or assessment task, you should check the assessment section of your Subject Outline and/or seek advice from your Subject Coordinator.

In subjects or assessment tasks where the ethical use of generative AI tools is encouraged, you will be expected to use it in responsible ways, and to acknowledge any use or content you have created using generative AI. For guidance on how to acknowledge the use of generative AI, see this FAQ on acknowledging content from AI tools on the Library webpage.

AI detection software may be used to investigate possible breaches of academic integrity, and you may be questioned on your subject and content knowledge or asked to demonstrate how you met the requirements of the assessment task under the Student Misconduct Rule.

Need help?

If you are having difficulties with understanding or completing an assessment task, contact your Subject Coordinator as soon as possible. Western also has a range of academic support services, including:

Please also remember that there is a range of wellbeing support available – from counselling and disability services to welfare.