Academic Integrity is a Shared Experience

While the University of Toronto takes the position that it is the student’s responsibility to know the Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters and understand what constitutes an academic offence, instructors have a role to play in educating their students about the principles of academic integrity, to direct them to the appropriate resources and supports, and to play a role in preventing AI cases. We recommend taking a student-centred and supportive approach while addressing the AI topic. We recommend clearly setting your expectations for students so that they understand their role in adhering to the Code. For courses in Quercus, every course shell includes a set of menu options on the right-hand side, including U of T information about Academic Integrity.

Please consult Appendix 1 for sample U of T Academic Integrity Statements to include in your online quizzes and assignments.


  • Setting the tone is important, just as it is on the first day of a face-to-face course.
  • Students look for you to provide direction, provide feedback and encouragement, and guide them on their course journey.
  • Students arrive in their courses with differing AI experiences. Perhaps they are students who have not yet written an essay in their time at U of T or are international students whose previous educational experiences included different assessment procedures and processes. Each instructor has varied approaches to AI and students should be informed early in the course what these expectations entail.
  • Frequent, low-stakes assessment methods can be very helpful in addressing student stress and possible temptation to violate the AI Code.

Try this:

  • Introduce AI early and often in your course.
  • Clearly convey that you are available to discuss AI at any time during the course.
  • Check with your Division for requirements on what to include in your course documents regarding AI (e.g., syllabus).
  • Guide your students through the AI section in your Quercus course and highlight key sections in the AI Code – use live or recorded formats.
  • Share definitions and examples of AI terms such as plagiarism, paraphrase, summarize, editing and proofreading for written assignments, and definitions/examples to illustrate what is considered cheating in collaborative work or in test/exam scenarios. For written assignments in particular, communicate with your class about the meaning of citations and why they are made. Allow students to ask clarification questions through online discussions. Find helpful resources on the U of T AI site.
  • Review the the University’s plagiarism detection tool conditions of use posted in all Quercus courses (right side menu). If you are using the University’s plagiarism detection tool, you must notify your students in your course syllabus.
  • Embed library and writing centre support in your Quercus course. Stress the importance of using these research and writing supports to build their confidence in these skills. Focus on the learning aspect.
  • Ensure you discuss AI with your Teaching Assistants and their role in educating and adhering to the Code in their tutorials, labs and grading processes. Explain and discuss with your TAs your course policies around violations of academic integrity.

How to: