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Researchers should be “committed to upholding the highest standards of rigour and integrity in all aspects of research”
To ensure your assessments are produced with integrity, you must ensure that what you submit is wholly your own work (unless a group assignment of course!). This page identifies the good study habits that can help you avoid engaging in unfair means or academic misconduct. It also lists some of the serious cheating infractions that you must avoid in producing your work.
Ensuring high standards of research
The concordat to support research integrity commits researchers to uphold the highest standards of rigour and integrity in all aspects of research. It identifies five core elements that all researchers should uphold:
- Conducting all stages of research with honesty and openness.
- Undertaking research with rigour, ensuring disciplinary norms and standards are maintained
- Providing transparency and open communication on all aspects of research and any conflicts of interest
- Ensuring all participants and beneficiaries are treated with care and respect.
- Maintaining accountability to funders, employers and researchers.
Upholding legal and professional requirements
The concordat to support research integrity states that research should always be conducted within appropriate legal and professional frameworks, obligations and standards.
You must ensure you follow the relevant ethical and health and safety guidelines in your faculty. The research ethics process is there to ensure:
- Research protects and respects subjects, participants and beneficiaries of the research.
- There is an appropriate balance of risk/benefit.
- Research is conducted with informed consent.
- Required data protection laws/processes are followed.
- Research processes are established with integrity.
- Conflicts of interest are managed.
Submitting work containing data measured in the field, in the laboratory or other setting, any part of which is untrue, made up, falsified or fabricated in any way. This includes the presentation of data in reports, projects, theses etc. based on experimental work falsely purported to have been carried out or data obtained by unfair means. This also includes using false statements or presenting false evidence in support of a request to withdraw from an examination, obtain an assessment extension, or explain any form of absence.
You should not present someone else's work as your own. Any ideas, data or words taken from other sources should be acknowledged with appropriate citations.
Failure to meet legal, ethical and professional obligations
You should ensure you follow any necessary legal, ethical and professional obligations such as consent. This includes the protection of not just human participants, but of animals and the environment. In particular, you should ensure data is processed and managed securely.
Misrepresentation of data, interests and/or authorship is a form of research misconduct. This can include the misrepresentation of data to suppress results or draw different conclusions. It can also involve the failure to declare the nature of your study, any conflicts of interest or any biases.
You should have a data management plan - and follow it. The data management plan ensures the safeguarding and security of your research data. You should ensure you are adhering to relevant laws and policies.