Plagiarism is a form of fraud, just like cheating on an exam or falsifying research data. It will be penalised accordingly.
Since plagiarism is cheating, and because plagiarism by definition undermines the scientific enterprise, cases of plagiarism are taken very seriously by the university community and are punishable by sanctions. For students, these sanctions amount to a maximum of twelve months’ exclusion from all examinations. When a student has doubts about what constitutes plagiarism, he or she can always consult with an instructor. Some general guidelines of the dos and don'ts of plagiarism can be found on the university website on regulations.
The Institute of Political Science has adopted the following clause in its Course and Examination Regulations in connection with plagiarism: Rules relating to fraudulent practices as described in article 7.12, section 4 of the Higher Education and Research Act (WHW):
- In a case in which fraudulent practice is suspected, the examination committee will suspend the assignment of a grade pending investigation of the suspicion. The examination committee will appoint a review committee consisting of three members that does not include those who have had direct supervision of the administration of the examination or the grading of written material from a course.
- The review committee will sollicit testimony from all relevant parties, but will in any case hear testimony from those who had the respective supervision (see section 1) and from the student who is suspected of fraudulent practice.
- If the review committee determines that a fraudulent practice has taken place, the results of a test or of written work will be declared invalid. In addition, the examination committee may exclude a student from participation in any or all tests or examinations for a period up to a maximum of one year.
As of September 2014, the Faculty of Social Sciences has instituted the Turnitin system to be used by instructors for the systematic detection of plagiarism in students’ written work.
Turnitin compares texts submitted by students with an extensive database of source documents, including papers and theses of other students and electronic documents on the internet, and evaluates the texts for similarities.
For each text submitted by a student, the instructor receives a report from Turnitin on identified similarities and will on this basis take any necessary action.
For the student, the establishment of the Turnitin system means that each written assignment must be submitted both in printed form to the instructor and in electronic form via Turnitin, on Blackboard.
- In Blackboard, navigate to the relevant course.
- Go to the assignment(s) of this course. Click on the relevant link.
- Turnitin opens a web form. Select your name (or enter it) and provide a clear title.
- Choose one of the upload methods on the bottom of the screen and upload the file containing your assignment.
- Click Upload.
- In the next window, check whether the upload went fine. If that is the case, click Confirm.
- You will see a window containing a digital proof of receipt.
- Your instructor will see in Turnitin who has submitted which assignments, and how 'original' they are.