Academic Skills Centre

Academic integrity

Check your understanding

Writing students

All students must complete an online tutorial and an academic integrity test.

What is academic integrity?

At university you are encouraged to work independently and to have original ideas. You are also expected to study the literature in your field and incorporate the ideas of other authors into your work.

Academic integrity means being honest about where you have found the material for your assignments. You must indicate which ideas are your own and which are other people’s – so you need to understand plagiarism and how to reference your work properly.

What is plagiarism?

Plagiarism is the use of any published or unpublished work without proper acknowledgement in your references. Even if it isn’t a deliberate intention to cheat, plagiarism is still a serious academic offence.

How does the University detect plagiarism?

Your lecturers have a good knowledge of the literature in your subject and will generally know when you are using information from a source without referencing properly. 

The University also subscribes to the JISC Plagiarism Detection Service Turnitin, used by most universities in the UK. Your work may be submitted to Turnitin periodically by your department.

What are the consequences of plagiarism?

Each case of plagiarism is considered individually and a penalty applied according to the seriousness of the offence. In the most serious cases penalties may include a downgraded degree classification or being asked to leave the University without a degree. Further information is in statement QA53 Examination and Assessment Offences of the University’s Quality Assurance Code of Practice.

Other resources

Developing good writing, research and note taking skills is essential to avoiding plagiarism in your work.  In addition to the tutorial and test, the University, through the Library, provides a range of resources which will help you to develop these skills.

Developing good writing, research and note-taking skills is essential to avoiding plagiarism. The University provides a range of resources to help you develop these skills:

If you have any questions about referencing and plagiarism ask your subject librarian or talk to your personal tutor or Director of Studies.

What does the tutorial involve?

The online tutorial provides you with a basic understanding of plagiarism and how to avoid it. Once you have completed the training, and feel confident that you have understood it, you are ready to take the test.

What does the test involve?

There is a test for each programme of study. Your Director of Studies will advise you which test you need to take and when you are expected to take it. To pass the test you need to achieve a mark of 85%.

How many times can I take the test?

As many times as necessary, until you pass.

Why do I have to pass the test?

  • The test checks your understanding of plagiarism and referencing, which is extremely important for your studies.
  • Once you have passed the test you won’t be able to claim ignorance of plagiarism or its consequences if you are found to have plagiarised in your work.
  • Until you have passed the test you won’t be allowed to continue your studies past your next progression point.

Your Director of Studies can identify this progression point. Your next progression point might be graduation; if so, you would not be allowed to graduate until you had taken and passed the test.

Do I have to retake the test if I transfer to another programme?

No, however, if you are found to have plagiarised in your work you may be asked to retake the test (in addition to other penalties).