Batumi Shota Rustaveli State University is hosting the third international meeting of the Erasmus + CBHE Project „Academic Integrity for Quality Teaching and Learning in Higher Education Institutions in Georgia “. The objective of the project is to develop the quality of teaching and learning in higher education institutions of Georgia following the principles of academic integrity. The program aims at developing policies and mechanisms to facilitate the detection, prevention, and eradication of plagiarism.

During the two-day meeting, Georgian and foreign partners will discuss the current results of the key components of the project. The event will contribute to the drafting of the future plans of the project and the preparation of the final conference which will be held in June 2020 at Ilia State University.

BSU has been using a special plagiarism checking program (Turnitin) since the fall semester of the 2018-2019 academic year, which has been purchased under the ERASMUS + CBHE project INTEGRITY. Workshops and training were held to get acquainted with the specifics of the program; the program was installed in the Moodle system; pilot training courses were registered; syllabi were modified; materials were uploaded and students were involved in the program.

From more than 2000 licenses allocated to the BSU in the 2018-2019 academic year (one license per user is provided), 1300 were used for freshmen. The remaining number of licenses was distributed to seven faculties of BSU. Both undergraduate and master’s degree courses were involved in the piloting. For the 2018-2019 academic year, it was mandatory to upload a master thesis in the Moodle program. About 277 master theses were uploaded. According to the same resolution, it is mandatory to upload undergraduate papers in the Moodle program from the 2019-2020 academic year.

From the 4000 licenses allocated to the BSU for the 2019-2020 academic year, up to 2400 licenses have been used for the current period. Among them, 1268 freshmen are involved in academic writing courses. For the second semester, it is expected to involve additional 1,000 students, with some licenses (up to 800 licenses) being used for undergraduate and graduate thesis.

The project coordinator drafted university regulations in 2019 on the recommendations of the university and foreign partners. In particular, the “Rule on Academic Integrity Protection at the BSU”, which established the university’s academic integrity policy, mechanisms, types of violations, and procedures and sanctions for its response. The rule is applied to university staff (including contracted staff), students, vocational education students, and trainees. Besides, changes were made to the University Code of Ethics and Internal Regulations