How to Use the CSU Student Honor Pledge?

Overview

The Honor Pledge can either be handwritten by the student, or printed on tests and other work, and signed by the student. It is each instructor's decision (or departmental policy) as to which course components. In order to be most effective in reinforcing the value of exercising academic integrity, we recommend that the use of the honor pledge is ongoing throughout the course and not solely an exercise at the beginning. Reminder; not signing the honor pledge will not be considered as evidence that a student has committed academic misconduct. It should be clear that students whose religious tenets prohibit taking oaths will not be expected to sign the pledge.

Before the first time you ask students to use the pledge, you should discuss what it means and why you are asking them to sign it.

For more information on this, please see Creating a Classroom Culture of Integrity.


Exams

The pledge can be printed on the top of the exam. A space should be provided for the student's signature as well as a place for the name to be printed.

Online Quizzes

University and course academic integrity policies should be included on your course home page. A reminder about the honor pledge can be included in the instructions for online quizzes and exams. Your first question could be the honor pledge with students being able to choose responses such as A = agree, B = Abstain. That item should not be scored; a "zero-points" question.

A separate "quiz" only containing the question about the honor pledge, can be created for use accompanying the submission of other assignments.

Homework

Your syllabus should include a copy of the pledge you would like students to include on written work. For papers submitted electronically, your directions could instruct students to type their name after the pledge as a "proxy" for their signature.

If you allow group work, you may also want to ask students to indicate what other students they worked with who contributed to their homework. That practice models avoiding plagiarism.

Blue Books and other Written Work

You can write the pledge on the board or exam and ask students to copy it on the first page of their blue book, with their signature. In the future CSU blue books may be pre-printed with the pledge.

Your syllabus should include a copy of the pledge you would like students to include on written work. For papers submitted electronically, your instructions could instruct students to type their name after the pledge as a "proxy" for their signature.