What constitutes plagiarism?

All students are held to the standards of academic honesty and integrity of the university. Plagiarism is a serious offense. Students should make every effort to avoid handing in plagiarised content. 

You can find more information about citing and plagiarism on the website of the University Library or the skills platform on Brightspace. 

Plagiarism includes improper paraphrasing and direct copying, with or without crediting the original source. It can also include reusing your own work; if you have already received EC points for your work, you cannot reuse it for another course or the colloquium essay, unless you have explicit prior permission

What are the consequences?

All written assignments are checked with the software from Turnitin before a  presentation is confirmed or a grade will be given. If possible unethical use of existing literature is detected in the Turnitin originality report, the report is forwarded to the examination committee, and the grading of the written assignment is put on hold until the examination committee reaches a decision. They will review the evidence and determine if you are allowed to rewrite the inappropriate sections of your assignment. Depending on the severity of the plagiarism, they can also require you to write a new assignment on a different topic or decide to exclude you from the MSc programme for a period of time.

How to avoid plagiarism.

Make smart choices in your writing process to avoid issues with plagiarism. Most plagiarism we see is not a case of conscious misleading but a result of the writer being so stressed that they cut corners.

  • Plan ahead, do not leave it until just before the deadline!
  • Do not copy sections from research articles to build your draft, thinking you will rewrite the sections later. Use your own words to paraphrase and summarise from the beginning.
  • Start using reference management software from the beginning of the process. Accompany every section you write with the source immediately so you do not forget to cite.
  • You can use figures from existing publications directly or adapt them for your essay, but you should explicitly cite the original source at the end of the caption. For instance write “figure adapted from [3]” or “figure reprinted from Jones et al.”. You can also use the original caption, but often will need to adapt especially the first sentence to explain the relevance of the figure in the context of your essay.