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Postgraduate Research Handbook

Academic Malpractice and Plagiarism

Academic Malpractice and Plagiarism

Alliance MBS expects the highest levels of academic good practice from its students. It is your responsibility to ensure that you fully understand these expectations which apply throughout your research training, doctoral research and dissemination of your findings.

Academic Malpractice

Academic Malpractice is a form of cheating and can be defined as any activity that is likely to undermine the integrity of scholarship and research.  It includes plagiarism, collusion, fabrication or falsification of results, and anything else that is intended to achieve credit for those committing it that they do not properly deserve.  Academic malpractice is taken very seriously by the School and the University, and is defined as follows:

Plagiarism is the presentation of the ideas, work or words of other people without proper, clear and unambiguous acknowledgement.  It also includes copying the work of another person, including another student, and the submission, in whole or in part, of a student’s own work (self-plagiarism) where, for example, such work may have been previously submitted for a different assessment.  One of the most common problems encountered by students relates to failure to correctly cite and reference sources.

Collusion occurs when a student or students collaborate inappropriately or illicitly with another student or students with the intention of improving the mark or grade of an individual or group.  Students who allow another student to copy their work are also committing collusion. Both the copier and the provider of the work are likely to be penalised.

Fabrication or falsification of data or results by individual students or groups of students is the presentation or inclusion in a piece of work of figures or data which may have been made up and which have no basis in verifiable sources; this may or may not additionally involve instances of academic malpractice.

There is extensive guidance and support for students to identify good academic practice and to help you avoid inadvertently committing academic malpractice.  This starts during Induction and is supported by workshops and advice from supervisors. If you are in any doubt about any matters relating to academic good practice, you should consult your supervisory team.


Allegations of academic malpractice against research students will normally be dealt with under Regulation XVII, Conduct & Discipline of Students, and investigated as described in the below guidance. In some exceptional circumstances, an investigation under the Code of Practice for Investigating Concerns about the Conduct of Research may be necessary prior to consideration by the University Student Disciplinary Panel.