Academic Policies - Graduate School

Academic Policies

University Academic Policies Statement

University Policies

The Graduate School at The University of Tulsa encourages our students to develop a strong sense of professional integrity, ethics, and courtesy.  Life Skills Workshops are offered to our graduate students during the academic year to provide them with skills that are outside of their discipline-specific knowledge and will maximize their opportunities to be successful in their career.  We view this training as aiding in the development of their professional competencies.  In addition to dealing with career development skills, this series also encompasses issues related to stress, juggling of one’s career and personal life, professional integrity, professional ethics, and more.  Each workshop, seminar, or panel discussion is intended to focus on an issue that relates to a student’s academic career but can then be transferred to their career beyond Graduate School. All graduate students are strongly encouraged to attend these workshops.

There are three Life Skills Workshops that you are required to attend.  The workshops concerning Sexual Harassment, Research Integrity, and Plagiarism and How to Avoid It are offered every semester and you are expected to attend one of each of these workshops during your first year of enrollment.

Prior to your enrollment at The University of Tulsa, the Graduate School wants to verify that you are informed of the University policies regarding Academic Honesty and Ethical Conduct of Research and Scholarship.  A good understanding of these two policies will aid you in your development of professional integrity and ethics.

This document is not a contract. Policies and interpretation by the administration are subject to change as circumstances warrant. Please check with the Associate Dean for updates and current application of any policy.

NOTE: The policies and procedures outlined in this document are to be applied to allegations of academic misconduct by graduate students. Allegations of academic misconduct on the part of undergraduate students should be referred to the Associate Dean of the college in which the alleged infraction occurred. Research misconduct, which is generally an instance of academic misconduct, is also governed by the policies of the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.

Read the full Academic Misconduct Policy.

Academic Honesty

In keeping with the intellectual ideals, standards for community, and educational mission of the University, students are expected to adhere to all academic policies. Cheating on examinations, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty violate both individual honor and the life of the community and may subject students to penalties ranging from failing grades to dismissal. Academic misconduct also includes the unauthorized or inappropriate use of University computers, vandalism of data files or equipment, use of computer resources for personal reasons unrelated to the academic and research activities of the University, plagiarism, violation of proprietary agreements, theft, or tampering with the programs and data of other users.

This brief summary does not replace the full Academic Misconduct Policy linked above.

Academic Misconduct

The University of Tulsa expects students and instructors to have prepared the work or research that bears their name, and to give acknowledgment in the use of materials and sources. Students are expected to do their own work and research, to prepare their own reports and papers, and to take examinations without the assistance of others or aids not allowed in the testing procedure. The standards and ideals of learning at the University assert that students develop and learn as they participate directly in the process of learning, rather than by substituting the labor and experience of others.

Academic misconduct includes, but is not confined to, plagiarizing; cheating on tests or examinations; turning in counterfeit reports, tests, and papers; stealing tests or other academic materials; knowingly falsifying academic records or documents of the college; and turning in the same work to more than one class without informing the instructors involved.

In particular, plagiarism is presenting as one’s own efforts the work of someone else without proper acknowledgment of that source. Exact copying is to be enclosed in quotation marks with an appropriate indication of its origin. Paraphrasing, wherein the basic sentence structure, phraseology, and unique language remain the same, is also plagiarism. The failure to acknowledge unique, unusual, or new ideas and facts not the product of one’s own investigation or creativity is plagiarism.  Submitting work that was created, researched, or produced by someone else is plagiarism.  When in doubt in a particular course on these matters, it is the student’s responsibility to seek guidance from the instructor of the course.

Unauthorized re-use of work or the turning in of the same work to more than one class without informing the instructors involved constitutes academic misconduct.  Falsification of academic records by knowingly and improperly changing grades on transcripts, grade sheets, and related documents, class work reports, tests, and projects, and knowingly falsifying documents related to the meeting of academic requirements or to academic achievements constitute academic misconduct.

Submitting a report of another’s research, submitting a paper researched or written by someone else, having someone else take a test, and submitting joint projects as if they were solely one’s own are all forms of academic misconduct that are unacceptable. Falsification of data or creation of false data by instructors or students in research or experimental procedures is considered academic misconduct and is a form of research misconduct. Plagiarism may also be a form of research misconduct in addition to academic misconduct.

Ethical Conduct in Academic Research & Scholarship

The integrity of the research process is an essential aspect of a university’s intellectual and social structure. Research is defined as all investigative, scholarly, and creative activity that supports the intellectual endeavors of the University. Although incidents of misconduct in research may be rare, those that do occur threaten the entire research enterprise.

The integrity of the research process must depend largely upon self-regulation. Formalization of the rights and responsibilities underlying scientific method is imperative in the research process. The University is responsible both for promoting academic practices that prevent misconduct and also for developing policies and procedures for dealing with allegations or other evidence of fraud or serious misconduct. All members of the University community—students, staff, faculty and administrators—share responsibility for developing and maintaining standards to assure ethical conduct of research and detection of abuse of these standards.

In dealing with this problem it is important to create an atmosphere that encourages openness and creativity. Good and innovative science cannot flourish in an atmosphere of oppressive regulation. Moreover, it is particularly important to distinguish misconduct in research and scholarship from the honest error and the ambiguities of interpretation that are inherent in the scientific process and are normally corrected by further research. The policies and procedures outlined below apply to faculty, staff and students; however, they are not intended to address all academic issues of an ethical nature. For example, discrimination and affirmative action are covered by other University policies.

Ethical Conduct in Academic Research and Scholarship

The primary way to encourage appropriate conduct in research and scholarship at the University is for faculty to promote and maintain a climate consistent with high ethical standards. To reduce the likelihood of misconduct in research and scholarship, the faculty and administration should facilitate the following:

  1. Encouragement of intellectual honesty.
  2. Assurance that quality of research, scholarship, and creative activity is emphasized.
  3. Acceptance of responsibility by supervisor as appropriate to the discipline.
  4. Establishment of well-defined research procedures.
  5. Appropriate assignment of credit and responsibility.


Misconduct in research and scholarship is inappropriate behavior by members of this University community. Allegations of misconduct in research and scholarship will be handled according to the policies and procedures included in the Research Misconduct Policy.