Citation and Plagiarism
Whilst the University's code of conduct concerning academic integrity relates specifically to the conduct of research, all graduate students are advised to make themselves aware of the document's contents.
The code of conduct mentions plagiarism, and in this context it is important for all taught course and research students within the division's subject areas, to be aware of, and to follow, good practice in the use of sources and making appropriate reference. You will need to exercise judgement in determining when reference is required, and when material may be taken to be so much a part of the 'general knowledge' of your subject that formal citation would not be expected. The basis on which such judgements are made is likely to vary slightly between subject areas, as may also the style and format of making references, and your supervisor, or course organiser where appropriate, will be in the best position to advise you on such matters; in addition, these may be covered, along with other aspects of academic writing, in your induction training.
By following the citation principles and practices in place in your subject area, you will develop a rigorous approach to academic referencing, and avoid inadvertent plagiarism. Cases of apparently deliberate plagiarism, while happily infrequent in the University, are taken extremely seriously, and where examiners suspect that this has occurred, they bring the matter to the attention of the Proctors. Your attention is drawn to the Proctors' and Assessor's Memorandum, Section 9.5, 'Conduct in Examinations', and in particular to sections 4 and 5 and the concluding paragraph of the section:
4 No candidate shall present for an examination as his or her own work any part or the substance of any part of another person's work.
5 In any written work (whether thesis, dissertation, essay, coursework, or written examinations) passages quoted or closely paraphrased from another person's work must be identified as quotations or paraphrases, and the source of the quoted or paraphrased material must be clearly acknowledged.
The University employs a series of sophisticated software applications to detect plagiarism in submitted examination work, both in terms of copying and collusion. It regularly monitors on-line essay banks, essay-writing services, and other potential sources of material. It reserves the right to check samples of submitted essays for plagiarism. Although the University strongly encourages the use of electronic resources by students in their academic work, any attempt to draw on third-party material without proper attribution may well attract severe disciplinary sanctions. "
The Radcliffe Science Library have put together two checklists to help 4th year and graduate students find relevant electronic resources for their projects.
The Resource Checklist can be used as an additional reading list for all students, and will be beneficial for students to use at the beginning of their research project. This may help students build their research skills, as well as improve the quality of their research projects.
The Search Checklist should be used in conjunction with the Resource Checklist to document the research evidence used for project work. It may also be used for checking progress and assessing quality of postgraduate project reports.