Academic dishonesty and plagiarism
- Academic Board Policy: Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism
- Procedure/Checklist for suspected plagiarism/academic dishonesty
- Responsibilities and obligations of each department and school
- Responsibilities and obligations of Academic Staff
This information has been developed to assist staff who have come across a case of potential plagiarism or academic dishonesty by students enrolled in coursework award courses.
The University provides a policy and procedure which defines the different forms of Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism, gives an overview of the procedures and details the roles and responsibilities of the Student, Department/School, Faculty and the Academic Staff.
The University provides a central website for students which provides information on all aspects of Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism. The University also provides a central website for staff which provides further information on all aspects of Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism.
Staff who suspect a case of plagiarism for postgraduate coursework students should refer to the policy to identify the type of plagiarism and follow the Procedure/ Checklist for suspected plagiarism/academic dishonesty, see link at top of page.
For suspected plagiarism by Medical students please complete and submit a Personal and Professional Development form (PDF) (PPD) to the Office of Medical Education.
No student commences their studies with an intent to plagiarise and yet many people do, for a variety of reasons. Some students plagiarise because they don’t fully understand what plagiarism is, why it is wrong and how it can be avoided. Other students may choose to plagiarise, because of time or other pressures or because they have done it once and gotten away with it. Whatever the reason, understanding what Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism is, will help all staff to not only identify cases of plagiarism but to identify the reasons behind the plagiarism enabling you to take the correct course of action as well as being able to counsel students on the correct policies and procedures.
Departments and schools have a responsibility and obligation to:
- inform students of their requirements by providing a departmental or school style guide (or guides) for the presentation of assignments. This (or these) must at least set out the styles of writing appropriate for different tasks and the form(s) of referencing demanded for each task;
- ensure that all academic staff are aware of the need to introduce and reinforce, from the outset, student understanding of the professional and academic skills demanded by the discipline at all levels;
- ensure that all academic staff are aware of the appropriate sources of assistance for students seeking to develop their skills in academic writing;
- incorporate material into first year units that will aid students to understand what academic honesty means;
- put in all appropriate public documents such as school handbooks a statement which:
- states the University definition of plagiarism and gives examples relevant to the discipline;
- makes clear that plagiarism is unacceptable;
- explains the process of dealing with complaints of Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism;
- provides information to students on how to seek support in improving their skills in the preparation and presentation of all assignments;
- provides clear guidelines on group work, especially concerning Assessment and division of tasks among group members;
- implements appropriate security practices for submission and return of assignments;
- provides clear guidelines outlining where co-operation and collaboration is encouraged and where it is prohibited; and
- provides clear procedures for monitoring group work by academic staff, to ensure fair Assessment.
Academic staff have a responsibility and obligation to:
- know the University’s policy on academic honesty including plagiarism, co-operation and group work, and to apply it consistently;
- be aware of and responsive to different cultural backgrounds of students, especially in relation to the use of the work of others and to writing skills;
- incorporate the principles of academic honesty into course outlines and Assessment criteria;
- apply appropriate referencing styles/conventions for all Assessment tasks and be consistent regarding referencing styles across tasks;
- provide feedback and consultation to students which identifies gaps in learning and knowledge skills and refer students to appropriate sources of assistance to improve their skills;
- provide students with early notification and fair warning if they believe any individual or group may be at risk of breaching guidelines relating to plagiarism, group work and co-operation;
- provide clear written instructions on the level of co-operation permitted within each Assessment component.