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Collaboration Policy:

You are encouraged to work together on homework problems; working with others is one of the best ways to learn the material, and even if you understand it, it often helps you to understand it better if you try to explain it to others. If you work together on homework that is turned in, however, you should cite the other students who were involved, and make a brief explanation of the roles each student played in the process.

You may not work together on problem sets (this is department policy for problem set courses). The college takes plagiarism very seriously, and so do I. You should be sure to read the material on plagiarism and academic honesty that you received in your freshman orientation package.

I recognize that there are strong incentives to try to get good grades and that you are presented with opportunities to cheat, particularly on the problem sets. Remember that what you are here for is education, not grades. It does you no good to get a good grade by cheating. In the long run, your grades in this course are of little consequence, but your actions as a person are of great importance. They are what define who you are, not your grades.

Think of it this way: Would you go to a doctor who cheated her way through her medical exams? Would you go to a stockbroker who cheated to get his certification? If you cheat here, what will that mean for you in the future? Your actions here will be with you the rest of your life; make sure they are actions you are willing to carry with you. Make them represent the kind of person you want to be.

I have a great deal of respect for someone who can admit that he does not know how to do something hard. I have no respect for someone who cheats to make it appear that he does. When students say they don't know how to do a problem, it makes me want to help them understand how; when students cheat in my class, it just makes me angry and want to stop helping them.

To those of you who resist the temptation to cheat, I say "Thank you, you're doing a great job. I appreciate it a lot, and am proud of you." To you others, I say "I'll see you in the Dean's office." You get to choose the path you'll take. Make it one you can live with.

[HOME] Math 127 (Winter 2000) web pages
Created: 30 Dec 1998
Last modified: 14 Dec 1999 08:41:50
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