U Have Integrity: Resource for Teaching Assistants

Author: Dr. Sarah Eaton, PhD, Werklund School of Education & Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning, September 2019

As a teaching assistant it can be tricky to know what your responsibilities are if you suspect or observe
academic misconduct. This resource is intended as a suggested guideline about what to do in such
situations in your role as a teaching assistant (TA). This resource may not cover all situations, but in can
serve as a starting point.

What to do

  • Familiarize yourself with the University of Calgary Student Academic Misconduct Policy and Procedure.
  • Familiarize yourself with the resources and services offered by the Student Success Centre about academic integrity.
  • Start a conversation with your course instructor at the beginning of the term about what they expect from you in terms of upholding integrity in your role. It is a good idea to do this before you undertake your work so both parties have clear expectations.
  • Act as a role model for academic integrity.
  • Discuss any alleged or actual breaches of integrity with the course instructor.
  • Gather evidence related to the alleged misconduct. Keep detailed notes of the incident, including dates and times, who was involved, etc. Provide this information to the course instructor.
  • Remember that learning how to address academic misconduct is part of your training as a teaching assistant, but you are not alone!

What to avoid

  • Do not keep the incident a secret (even if the student asks you to). Talk to the course instructor.
  • Do not discuss the matter with any other teaching assistants, students, etc.
  • Do not confront a student. It is the role of the course instructor to address alleged or actual academic misconduct with the student(s) involved.
  • Do not impose any sanctions (punishments) on your own. The course instructor (not the TA) is responsible for following the guidelines established within the faculty about how to address actual or suspected cases of academic misconduct.
  • Do not share details (even if they are de-identified) on social media, even in closed or private groups.

Related content

Webinar: Academic Integrity in Online Courses

Watch Now >>

Learning Module: Teaching Assistant Orientation

Learn more >>

For more information: Sarah Elaine Eaton, University of Calgary – seaton@ucalgary.ca