28 January 2023

Plagiarism all over the place

When I took over the job of plagiarism officer, I asked my predecessor Jaco how many cases he got in a normal year. He said about 30. That sounded quite manageable.

Within five minutes of taking on the job, I already had two cases in. The day after, two further cases appeared. And it didn't stop there; in the first three weeks I had to deal with 14 cases. More than I had anticipated!

I'm still building up a routine in dealing with them and documenting it all! I'm sure I'll get faster at this. But at the moment, I am spending a lot of time scrutinising students’ submissions, composing stern emails, dealing with potentially upset students who respond, organising meetings with the people involved to talk things through in person, and documenting all of that. I'm sure at some point I'll get around to actually marking the exam the students sat! Come to think of it; I need to check if any plagiarism cases arise from that… I really hope not. It's bad enough as it is!

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