Research integrity and academic integrity

Academic integrity and research integrity are related concepts, but they refer to different aspects of the academic and research environment.

Academic integrity refers to the principles that guide students in their educational pursuits and includes the work they submit for coursework and assessments, whereas research integrity relates to the responsible conduct of research and the dissemination of research findings.

Both forms of integrity are interconnected, contributing to the overall culture of excellence and trust in the academic and research community.


Plagiarism directly impacts the credibility and reliability of educational and research activities, so it’s important to avoid plagiarism to uphold academic and research integrity.

Plagiarism occurs when you use someone else’s words, theories, data or concepts without attributing the original source.

Plagiarism can include:

  • Direct copying - using text or visual content without using quotation marks or properly citing the source
  • Mosaic or patchwork plagiarism - combining sentences from different sources or using someone else’s text as a scaffold for your own work, creating a new text that appears to be original
  • Presenting someone else's ideas, concepts or arguments as your own without acknowledging the source
  • Self-plagiarism - reusing your own work without proper citation or permission

Plagiarism and Research Integrity

The La Trobe Research Integrity Policy states that La Trobe researchers and research trainees are expected to adhere to responsible research practices as prescribed by the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (Research Code).

According to Researcher Responsibility 4 of the Research Code, researchers must ensure that they ‘cite and acknowledge other relevant work appropriately and accurately’ . This responsibility extends beyond citing the work of others. Your publications and thesis should also accurately represent the development of your ideas and any previous publications related to your research. See the self-citation page for more information.

Embedding integrity in the process of publishing research outputs is an essential aspect of research integrity. All researchers, including staff and higher degree by research candidates, have a responsibility to be familiar with correct citation practices as followed in their disciplines, and abiding by these practices. Accurate citation according to the norms of your discipline and avoiding plagiarism are essential components of upholding research integrity.

If you have any questions or concerns about plagiarism and how it relates to research integrity, please reach out to the Research Integrity Hub by sending an e-mail to

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