Plagiarism scandal tarnishes student newspaper at Trinity College, Dublin

utbanner4Irish eyes definitely are not smiling at Trinity College in Dublin, where the campus paper, The University Times, has acknowledged that one of its editors seems to have been a serial plagiarist.

According to an editorial in the paper published on Friday:

senior management at The University Times became aware that a member of our editorial staff had plagiarised an article that had been published yesterday evening. Immediately following this discovery, we conducted a preliminary investigation into the matter to determine whether it was an isolated instance or part of a pattern of misconduct. This revealed that the editor in question has plagiarised multiple times over the course of the past twelve months by lifting sentences and paragraphs, sometimes verbatim or with minimal rewording, and sometimes significant chunks of articles and essays published elsewhere on the web. …

As of this afternoon, we have removed the editor from his position. Over the course of the next few days, we will be carefully investigating this editor’s work and redirecting his articles to a note apologising for the systematic plagiarism. We intend to take this opportunity to renew our commitment to producing the highest quality journalism possible by opening up the discussion within our team about the reasons as to how an incident like this can occur – and reaffirming standards and best practice in our newsroom.

Irish institutions of higher learning have been alarmed by what they’ve perceived as widespread plagiarism and unethical publishing practices among students. A 2011 article in The Independent — titled “Colleges clamp down as students copy and paste their way to degrees” — reported that:

A recent survey of 681 students by the TCD Students Union newspaper, The University Times, showed that 54% of students had contravened the college’s plagiarism policy by enlisting the help of a friend to complete an assignment.

The survey also found that over 70% of students either have no knowledge or “only some knowledge” of Trinity College’s policies on plagiarism.

One thought on “Plagiarism scandal tarnishes student newspaper at Trinity College, Dublin”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.