Academic misconduct

Writing with a pen

Oxford Brookes University manages breaches of academic regulations with a system that is designed to ensure that students suspected of academic misconduct are provided with an independent and transparent approach that is efficient, fair and speedy. Students have the right to see the evidence of their suspected misconduct, to be able to defend themselves and have the right to appeal a decision.

Academic misconduct can include (but is not limited to):

Plagiarism / submitting other people's work as your own

e.g. copying the words or ideas of another person with or without their knowledge or agreement and presenting it as one’s own. 

Falsification 

e.g. the presentation or submission of false information within an attempt to gain academic credit. e.g. fabricating research results, or questionnaire responses.

Collusion 

e.g. submitting work produced in collaboration with others, but claiming it is entirely the student’s own work.

Actions which enable another student to access or copy all or part of one’s own

e.g. sharing work with other students. 

Custom writing services 

e.g. the use of materials created by third parties and/or web sites and passed off as the student’s own, contract cheating, running of, or participation in, auction sites and essay mills. Also, attempting to buy or use assessments or answers to questions set.

Duplication 

e.g. the inclusion in coursework of any material which is identical or similar to material which has already been awarded credit by the same student for any other assessment within the University or elsewhere, for example, submitting the same piece of coursework for two different modules.  


Please refer to the Academic Conduct Procedure in full.

Useful documents

Please refer to the Regulations for Study for additional guidance on what constitutes cheating and the Academic Conduct Referral Form if you have concerns about a student's academic integrity and if there may be evidence of misconduct.

Support for Academic Writing

Students are encouraged to seek support and not resort to cheating. The penalties can have an effect on your academic record and in some circumstances can impact upon your fitness to practise. 

Guidance and support for good practice can be accessed here:

Centre for Academic Development- the team provide resources, workshops and guidance on academic skills and writing

• The Academic Integrity course can help you to learn what is expected at Brookes 

Brookes Referencing guides

Help and advice

Help and advice is available from a variety of sources across the University:

Referral

If your marker believes you may have breached the academic conduct regulations, they will refer you to the Student Investigation and Resolution Team. 

An academic conduct officer will then review the piece of work. They will decide whether 

a) the work is problematic or not. 

If not, the work will be marked as normal. If there are problems, the academic conduct officer will then decide:

b.i) if the student should engage with the Centre for Academic Development (CAD).

If you are directed to CAD you will be asked to carry out a short online academic integrity module and then attend a workshop. It is hoped these will teach you good academic practice and avoid your work being referred again.

bii) If the work needs a full investigation, 

If a full investigation is required, you will be invited for an interview.

The interview

If you have been invited to attend an interview, you will be sent an email advising you of the date of the interview. Please respond as soon as possible to confirm whether you can attend that date. If you do not attend the interview or engage in the process, the case could be considered in your absence. The letter should include the alleged breach and you will also be provided with the Turnitin report of your piece of work, if appropriate. 

Please do not panic! 

During the interview, the academic conduct officer will further explain the reason for the referral and the alleged breach. This will then be your opportunity to explain your piece of work, provide any further evidence and ask any questions. For the interview, you are able to have someone accompany you, for example a friend. Please refer to the academic conduct procedure for more information on this

If you are unsure on the process or would like some guidance or advice, please consider contacting:


Possible outcomes

After an interview, you may be:

• Found not to be in breach of any regulations and your work will be marked as normal

• Given a penalty – this could be any of the penalties under section 4.2 of the academic conduct procedure

• Referred to a University Conduct Committee, if the breach is considered to be severe

The conduct officer will explain the reasons for their decision in the outcome letter. Please note that until the case is concluded (either after the interview or after a conduct committee), it is likely that your programme will show a 'DD' for the module or piece of work.

If a student is found in breach of the regulations, following an outcome given by an academic conduct officer or University Appeal Committee, they have a right to appeal that decision. Further information on this can be found under section 9 of the Academic Conduct Procedure

For more information, please consult the Academic Conduct Procedure in full.

Please note, any penalties issued under these regulations normally take precedence over any outcome of an exceptional circumstances (ECs) or academic appeal (AA) application, so if you have been found in breach of academic conduct procedures, you might not receive an allowance via ECs or AA. 

Centre for Academic Development (CAD)

We want students to learn about academic integrity and how to properly create academic work. Therefore, if a student is referred for academic misconduct and they are in their first year at the University at any level and the breach is minor, the outcome may be an educational route. This means a referral to the Centre for Academic Development (CAD) instead of a full investigation.

Students will be required to complete an online course and attend a workshop to help them understand academic integrity. This is intended to support and educate the student to reduce the likelihood of their work being referred again.

Please note that engagement with CAD is compulsory and the student's grade will remain as “DD” on their Student Record until CAD notifies the Student Investigation and Resolution Team that the student has completed the full course.