Writing Standards for all Essays and Thesis
1. Writing assignments are required for all degree levels, except the Certificate in Christian Missions and Theology Specifically, each degree program beyond the certificate level requires completion of an essay for each of the courses, and a culminating thesis. Specific essay and thesis requirements are detailed under each degree level description below. Where writing assignments are required, the student is to use their own thoughts and interpretation. Each program will have its own required word count per assignment. Important Acceptable Document Formats: All documents submitted to CMTI, be they essays or thesis must be submitted in one of these formats: .rtf, .doc, .docx, or .wpd. Note that PDF is not an acceptable format. 2. The first page of the writing assignment should contain: submission date, the program and course name, Chancellor”s name, student’s name, and word count. Note, that in the case of the thesis, a Table of Contents is required; however, the Table of Contents is not requires for essays. 3. The Modern Language Association (MLA) is the most commonly used style used for writing papers and citing sources within the liberal arts and humanities. MLA tends to be the style most preferred by authors and publishers of religious-oriented literature, be it a book, journal article, or otherwise. CMTI has established MLA as the standard for students to follow when preparing and submitting all essays and thesis. Any written assignment submitted in other than MLA format and style will be returned for a proper rework. However, keeping in the spirit of CMTI not requiring online students to purchase any books or materials, the following online references will provide all of the information and guidance needed to prepare your essays and thesis: Summary of MLA Style Guide: This guide is provided as a PDF document, through Western Michigan University Libraries. Use this guide for a quick reference; you may find answers to most of your questions in this brief five page PDF document. Link: MLA Formatting and Style Guide: This is a very extensive web-based guide provided by the “OWL” Writing Lab at Purdue University. This extensive reference includes a menu on the left side of the main page. Through that menu, you will find guidance on more advanced writing, formatting, and referencing topics. Link: www.owl.english.purdue.edu/owl
MLA In-Text Citations: www.owl.english.purdue.edu/
Plagiarism: Plagiarism is defined as, Not sure what plagiarism is, or how to avoid it? Here is an excellent resource www.plagiarism.org Please study it; it is your responsibility to ensure that any work you submit at CMTI is 100% plagiarism free. CMTI has always observed a zero tolerance policy on acts of plagiarism found in student essays and thesis. Effective 8/1/2012, we have established a formal written policy as follows: Three or more instances of plagiarized material found in essays or the thesis will result in automatic expulsion from the program in which the student is enrolled. Students found in violation of this policy will need to reapply to the program of their interest; and if accepted, they will need to start from the very beginning. No previously completed work will be applied to re-admitted students. instances of plagiarized content. It also applies to separate instances of plagiarized content cumulatively amounting to three or more times in separate papers or other work submitted in fulfillment of degree requirements. Grammarly.com: CMTI has partnered with Grammarly.com to assist in marking student’s essays. It provides feedback concerning issues with writing clearly and succinctly, grammar, and avoiding plagiarism. Students are encouraged to check their essays and thesis papers on this or similar sites for any potential errors and correct them before submitting for marking. Errors in grammar may reduce a student’s final mark; more serious errors may require a complete rework of a given assignment. Students may obtain a completely free (although brief) summary, of their essays or thesis by submitting their report to www.plagiarism.org. Students may also submit their essays or thesis to their assigned Lecturer prior to grading/marking. The Lecturer can then provide a detailed grammarly.com report for the student to review prior to submission of their essays or thesis for final grading/marking. Please contact your assigned professor for assistance with using the grammarly.com resource.