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Tampere University Student's Handbook

Guidelines for academic ethics and procedures for handling allegations of misconduct at Tampere University


The guidelines have been approved by the vice-rector for education under section 27 of Tampere University Regulations on Degrees.

N.B. The translation is unofficial. In case of any discrepancies between the Finnish and English versions, the Finnish version shall prevail.

The guidelines include the following:

Violations of good study practices and good scientific practices refer to unethical and dishonest actions aimed at gaining benefit for oneself or others by deceiving the academic community or decision-makers. Tampere University always addresses suspicions of violations of ethical guidelines in studies and investigates them promptly while ensuring the rights of all parties.

This guideline describes the procedure for investigating suspicions of violations related to a student's study performance. The guideline applies to all theses, study performances, and their components conducted at Tampere University, excluding doctoral dissertations, for which the HTK guidelines of the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity (TENK) apply.

Academic violation hinders the achievement of learning objectives and learning and violates the values and ethical principles of the university. Academic misconduct generally aims to deceive the evaluator of the study performance. Violations can be categorized into two main classes: academic misconduct and negligence.

Academic misconduct includes, among other things (the list covers typical violation cases but is not exhaustive):

  • plagiarism, i.e. presenting another person’s text, picture, figure, graph, software, previous study attainment or other similar presentation or a part thereof as one’s own,
  • misuse of artificial intelligence, for example, presenting as one's own, without proper mention of the use of artificial intelligence, text, image, figure, table, computer program, or other similar presentation or its part produced by artificial intelligence,
  • self-plagiarism, i.e., using the same texts or presentations or parts thereof as new coursework without making it clear that the material has already been used in a previous study attainment.
  • assisting in plagiarism, i.e., preparing a study performance on behalf of another person or providing a piece of work or thesis or part thereof prepared for assessing study performances to another student for their apparent purpose of presenting it as their own study performance or part thereof,
  • cheating, e.g., obtaining necessary information for an evaluation session by carrying information sources into the evaluation space without explicit instructions from the person responsible for the evaluation, looking at or otherwise obtaining information from another student participating in the evaluation session, or maintaining contact outside the evaluation space,
  • assisting in cheating, i.e. by giving one’s own responses, other texts or information needed to complete the assessed exercise to another person who is participating in the assessment situation,
  • misappropriation, i.e. presenting another person’s text, idea, plan, observation or data related to or intended as a coursework as one’s own,
  • incitement to cheating

Negligence is the neglect of good scientific practice, manifested by undermining others' work, presenting results and methods carelessly and thus misleadingly, incomplete recording and preservation of results and materials, self-plagiarism, and other misleading actions towards the academic community.

Other unethical actions or violations related to studies, such as falsification of attendance records, are handled according to this guideline.

Investigation of suspicions of violations

Suspicions of violations are investigated concerning the study performance or thesis in the responsible faculty. The suspicion is also communicated to the head of study services of the faculty where the student has the right to study related to the said study. If the study performance suspected of a violation is related to Language Centre or The Doctoral School studies, the matter is investigated in the faculty where the student has the right to study related to the said study.

Teachers have an obligation to address observed violations or suspicions of violations of good study practices or good scientific practices. The teacher notifies the head of study services whenever plagiarism is suspected. The head of study services is responsible for investigating suspicions of violations within the faculty.

Actions that appear to be academic misconduct may be due to ignorance. In such cases, consideration is given to how well the student should be expected to master good scientific practice and good study practice. Carelessness or negligence may also be assessed as a violation of good scientific practice. In unclear situations, the teacher may consult the head of study services. The university ensures that students have the opportunity to acquire sufficient knowledge, skills, and attitudes to act in accordance with good practices and ethically sustainable manner in their studies and upon graduation.

Procedure for investigating suspicions of academic misconduct or negligence related to study performance or thesis

  1. If a teacher, supervisor, examiner, another student, or other party suspects that a student has committed academic misconduct or negligence in a study performance or thesis, the suspicion is reported to the responsible teacher or head of study services responsible for the respective study performance or thesis. If the report comes to the head of study services, they contact the responsible teacher.
  2. If the teacher responsible for the study performance or thesis assesses that the student's actions have resulted from a human error or misunderstanding, the teacher may require the student to correct or redo the work in accordance with good study practices and good scientific practices.
  3. If there is reason to suspect academic violation, the responsible teacher submits a written statement to the faculty head of study services. The head of study services contacts the student in writing, informs them of the suspension of assessment and the suspicion of violation, and requests a written explanation from the student regarding the incident.
  4. If the student admits to the suspected academic violation, and there is no need for further clarification, the investigation of the suspicion may be concluded.
  5. The student has the right to be heard when investigating allegations of academic violations, either in writing or at a hearing. The student has the right to bring a support person (e.g., a representative of the student union) to the hearing. A memorandum is made of the hearing. Failure to attend the hearing does not prevent the processing of the matter.
  6. Based on the investigations, the dean decides on the matter and determines the consequences based on the seriousness of the academic violation. If the violation is found to be serious, the dean may refer the matter for further consideration to the president of Tampere University. If no violation has occurred, the matter is concluded by the dean's decision.

Procedure for suspicions arising after the acceptance of a study performance or thesis

If there is suspicion of academic misconduct or negligence after the acceptance of a study performance or thesis, the decision to accept the study performance may be corrected as self-correction under administrative law. The study performance may be rejected, and disciplinary measures under section 45 of the Universities Act may be imposed on the student if they are still enrolled as a student at Tampere University. The investigation of the matter follows the procedure described above for investigating suspicions of violations related to study performance.

Consequences of violations

The consequences of violations of ethical guidelines must be proportional to the nature and severity of the violation. When assessing severity, the extent, recurrence, and other factors related to the seriousness and harmfulness of the misconduct are considered.

Confirmed academic violation leads to the rejection of the study performance. Repeating the study performance is possible according to the curriculum, the offering of instruction, and the evaluation regulation of Tampere University. Serious violation on a thesis leads to the rejection of the thesis. The student has the right to prepare a new thesis, the topic, material, and research methods of which, as well as supervision, are agreed upon separately.

If a student is found guilty of serious academic misconduct or negligence, they cannot receive any scholarship under the Tampere University scholarship policy (Terms and conditions of the Tampere University tuition fee scholarship) for their degree at Tampere University.

If a student found guilty of a violation is a visiting student at Tampere University, the student's home university is informed of the violation and any disciplinary action.

Depending on the assessed severity of the confirmed violation, disciplinary measures may include:

  • Dean's written warning

In the case of confirmed violations of ethical guidelines, the dean issues a written warning. The warning is recorded in the university's administrative system.

  • Warning by the President of Tampere University or Temporary Suspension of the Student

If a student is found to have repeatedly committed academic misconduct or negligence in their coursework, or if the violation leads to the rejection of a thesis required for an advanced degree, or if the president deems the violation to be serious for other reasons, they may issue a warning in accordance with Section 45 of the University Act, or the University Board may, upon the president's recommendation, suspend the student for a specified period. During the suspension period, the student cannot register for courses or complete them. The temporary suspension is recorded in the student register. The decision made in this matter is considered a public document according to the Act on the Openness of Government Activities (621/1999).


An appeal can be filed regarding the assessment of a study assignment or thesis rejected based on a violation of ethical guidelines, in accordance with the University Act and the Tampere University Degree Regulations.

Published: 21.2.2019
Updated: 2.4.2024