Academic Honesty in Computer Science at UCSD

[Updated August 30, 2007.  This document is based on a similar document written by Prof. Scott Baden.]

Cheating is not only dishonest, but also self-destructive.  Some of the principles of academic honesty that are especially important in CSE courses are:

Remember that authorized course assistance is available in person and via email from the instructor, teaching assistants, lab tutors, and OASIS.  For a lesson about plagiarism see the August 11, 2001 article in the Los Angeles Times by H.G. Reza, Second Source Calls Law School Dean Plagiarist.

If you work in a team on any assignment or project, and there is a case of academic dishonesty, then all members of the team will be assumed to be equally responsible and will be subject to the same penalties.  If you work in a team, it is your responsibility to make sure that your partners are as honest as you are, and that they are well-informed about what is permissible.

All policies about honesty apply to all versions of your work: preliminary versions and final versions, submitted versions and in-preparation versions.

Each student is responsible for knowing and abiding by the UCSD Policy on Integrity of Scholarship, as described in the UCSD General Catalog. A student violating this policy will be reported to the appropriate dean for administrative action, such as probation or expulsion from UCSD, in addition to any academic penalty imposed by the instructor in the course.

The following is an excerpt from the UCSD General Catalog (1997-8) on "Students' Responsibility."


No student shall engage in any activity that involves attempting to receive a grade by means other than honest effort, for example:

  1. No student shall knowingly procure, provide, or accept any unauthorized materials that contains questions or answers to any examination or assignment to be given at a subsequent time.
  2. No student shall complete, in part or in total, any examination or assignment for another person.
  3. No student shall knowingly allow any examination or assignment to be completed, in part or in total, for himself or herself by another person.
  4. No student shall plagiarize or copy the work of another person and submit it as his or her own work.
  5. No student shall employ aids excluded by the instructor in undertaking course work.
  6. No student shall alter graded class assignments or examinations and then resubmit them for re-grading.
  7. No student shall submit substantially the same material in more than one course without prior authorization.
For programming classes the above regulations imply the following.
  1. All source code and documentation submitted for evaluation or existing inside the student's computer accounts must be the student's original work or material specifically authorized by the instructor. (Students may accept material relevant to an assignment after the assignment is completed, however.)
  2. Collaborating with other students to develop, complete or correct course work is limited to activities explicitly authorized by the Instructor. Use of other student's course work, in part or in total, to develop, complete or correct course work is unauthorized, including course material submitted in past offerings of the course.
  3. No student shall make available to others source code or documentation useful in completing an assignment, nor procure or accept such material. This includes students in current and future offerings of the course, and applies to electronic transmissions including email, web pages, ftp, and so on, as well as hard copy such as source code listings.
  4. No student shall knowingly permit such information to be conveyed to others for the purpose of completing an assignment.