What happens in cases of plagiarism, fabricated/fraudulent coursework or malpractice

The procedure for cases of plagiarism, malpractice or fabricated/fraudulent coursework are explained in the steps below: 

1. You will receive a letter from your department asking you to come to a departmental meeting. The letter will include: 

  • the date of your meeting (you should be given 3 days notice)
  • what the allegation is (whether plagiarism, malpractice or fabricated/fraudulent coursework)
  • which piece(s) of work the allegation is about 
  • a copy of the work fully marked-up (i.e. the sections that are believed to be plagiarised will be highlighted, underlined or clearly indicated)
  • a copy of the evidence related to the allegation (i.e. the book/website/other essay etc that they think that you have plagiarised)

2. At the departmental meeting, you will have a chance to talk about the allegations and put forward your version of the events. If you have any special circumstances relating to the case, you should make these clear here. You can bring a Supporter with you who can be anyone not directly linked to the case (family, friend, colleague).

LUU Advice can help you prepare for the meeting, for more information see the related articles below. 

The Head of School or a senior member of staff acting on their behalf will normally chair the meeting. Your personal tutor, module leader and other relevant department members who have been involved in the module may also be present. There may also be a staff member to take minutes. 

3. After the meeting, you will be told what will happen. There are 14 days for your outcome, any of the following three options:

  • The School can decide that you are innocent of the allegation. Nothing else will have to happen. 
  • If you have admitted to the offence and it is your first offence, the case may be settled at School level. The School will let you know what penalty has been decided on. A copy of this letter will be sent to the Student Cases Team to be put on your file but you will not have to go to anymore meetings. Once the penalty (often a re-submission of work) has been completed, the procedure is at an end for you.
  • If you have denied the allegation but the School believe that there is a case to answer, or if the allegation relates to a serious offence (whether or not you have admitted to it), or if it is a second or subsequent offence they will refer your case to the University Committee on Applications. They may recommend a penalty. 

If you don’t attend your departmental meeting without good cause (such as illness) the School can assume that you admit to the allegation. They can then award a penalty and/or forward the case to the University.

For more information, check out the University’s pages on procedures and policies for cases of plagiarism, fabricated/ fraudulent coursework and malpractice.