Academic ethics for students
TAMK’s procedures in fraud situations
1. Background for fraud guidelines
TAMK applies the National Advisory Board on Research Ethics' guidelines on responsible conduct of research and procedures for handling allegations of misconduct (advisory board’s guidelines). The board was nominated by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The degree regulations 32§ and section 10 of the disciplinary regulations are also followed in fraud situations.
Sanctions of breaking the rules have been defined separately in accordance with the Universities of Applied Sciences Act. The sanctions depend on the seriousness and recurrence of offences.
2. General guidelines
2.1. Thesis-related frauds are always processed in accordance with the National Advisory Board on Research Ethics’ guidelines. The matter is processed by the vice president for education on the proposal of the head of competence area or a person authorised by the head.
2.2. Frauds in connection with examinations and written assignments
An examination fraud stands for cheating in a written or oral examination or in an equivalent situation. This is also applied to remote examinations. The fraud can manifest for example as
- attempt to read another person’s examination answers
- exchange of papers or messages
- use of a mobile phone
- forbidden use of the calculator memory
- forbidden use of personal material
- forbidden markings in personal materials
- assisting of another person in a fraud
- self-plagiarism (use of same outputs or presentations as seemingly new ones)
- forbidden discussion.
In written assignments (reports, accounts, assignments, seminar presentations, project assignments) the fraud or disregard may manifest for example as
- deficient references
- presentation of same results as new ones
- unauthorised quotations (plagiarism) or self-plagiarism (use of same results or presentations or parts of them as seemingly new ones)
- copying directly from the internet
- cooperation in individual assignments
- presentation of another person’s text as one’s own.
The teacher includes the assessment criteria for written assignments in course implementation plans. Students also receive written instructions on written assignments.
In examination situations, the teacher or retake examination supervisor interrupts the student’s examination after noticing suspected cheating and takes possession of the material. If cheating is suspected afterwards during assessment of written assignments, the teacher contacts the student or students to deal with the matter as soon as possible.
2.3. Practical training
The same fraud criteria apply to study-related practical training as to other fraud cases. The fraud may include for example
- manipulation of information (as regards workshift lists)
- use of another person’s material as one’s own for example in reports.
3. Processing of fraud cases
a) Observed or suspected fraud
The student(s) and teacher discuss the matter and based on the discussion
- the student is found guilty of a fraud. The fraud leads to either failing of the fraudulent part performance and thus fall of the grade or retake of the part performance. If several part performances are found fraudulent, they are all failed and retaken. The teacher and student agree on the retake manner. Retakes are possible according to normal retake practices and timetables. Extra retake possibilities are not organised due to fraud.
The teacher writes a report on the fraud, its processing and outcome and delivers it to the head of degree programme and the student. The student has the possibility to request for amendment in seven days.
After being informed of the fraud, the head of degree programme reminds the student of the fact that repeated frauds lead to a warning or fixed-term suspension.
- the suspect proves groundless and does not lead to further measures.
- If the student(s) deny the fraud observed or suspected by the teacher and the situation is not solved in the teacher-student discussion, it is transferred to the head of degree programme for further processing in 14 days after the discussion. The discussion parties write a written report and deliver it to the head of degree programme.
If the case is not solved at a)
b) Further processing
- Further processing takes place between the head of degree programme, teacher and student.
As a result of the discussion, the head of degree programme makes a written decision on the matter which includes the outcome and related measures approved in written by the parties.
- If the same student is repeatedly found guilty of a fraud, the head of degree programme takes the matter to further processing and requests the director of the school to propose the vice president for education to give a warning or suspend the student for a fixed term.
If the guilty student is an exchange student, the head of degree programme and the person in charge of TAMK’s international mobilities send a report on the matter to the student’s home institution.
c) Disciplinary decisions
If the head of degree programme asks the director of school to prepare a decision proposal to the vice president for education, the vice president for education makes a proposal to the president who may give a warning or the board of TAMK may suspend the student for a fixed period of time.