When can I share my ideas with others?

Sharing ideas is central to the academic approach. By writing assignments, you are involved in the community of learning, building knowledge in your subject areas. You will notice there are a variety of competing perspectives: knowledge is not fixed. All disciplines are involved is an ongoing discussion, critique and argument that extends knowledge of the field, changes it and clarifies it.

Sharing ideas to clarify understanding

You are expected to use the words and ideas of others to support and explain your own ideas (and to acknowledge the source of your support!) It is in engaging with the ideas of others that you can clarify and develop your own. Discussion is an important mechanism for doing this.

MUSO discussion boards

Your lecturers will encourage discussion about their subject area through mechanisms such as MUSO discussion boards. Here, you will be encouraged to consider, clarify and argue about what you and your fellow students think about things. Sharing your ideas is an important part of tertiary education.


One area that is not always clear is just how far you should go with sharing your ideas when it comes to assessment. On the one hand, you are asked to work independently, and to sign your assignment cover page with the statement "I certify that I have not plagiarised the work of others or participated in unauthorised collusion when preparing this assignment". On the other, you are asked discuss your ideas with others.

Here is a quiz question about sharing ideas. See if your response would have a better or worse impact on your learning outcomes.

Learn from others

By all means, share your assignments with others - but do so after the work has been marked and you have received the feedback from your lecturer. You will learn a lot from reading the work of others. You just need to ensure that your assignment or, in the case of group work, your part of the assignment, has been written by you.