Students’ Academic Writing and Academic Integrity
As in most faculties at most universities, the students in the Faculty of Social Work sometimes struggle with academic writing and in particular with the forms of Social Work writing that differ from what they may have previously encountered. Advanced Standing and Part-time students often have more difficulty because many have been out of the academic environment for long periods.
The Faculty of Social Work, in collaboration with the university’s Writing Centre, provides a two-part Writing Workshop for MSW students in the fall term which is well attended by first year students. Part One deals with the elements of good academic writing, tailored to the Social Work context, including critical personal reflection. Part Two deals with understanding and avoiding plagiarism, paraphrasing, summarizing and APA referencing system. You may wish to promote the workshop in your class. You may also encourage students, at any time during the year, to contact the Writing Centre for assistance with their written assignments.
From time to time, you may encounter an assignment which you suspect is plagiarized or contains plagiarized segments. Please see the university’s policy on plagiarism as well as an additional detailed discussion of plagiarism. WLU subscribes to the service called turnitin.com, which instructors may use to check suspected papers. Your course outline must include the statement on plagiarism
The MSW Writing Workshop addresses plagiarism and correct referencing at length and offers students recommended on-line and print resources they can consult. Booklets issued by major academic publishing companies are available in the book store which offer succinct, helpful guidelines and examples of good academic writing and correct referencing.