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Plagiarism prevention document, 2021-22

At Birkbeck we value academic integrity. This means that:

  • All the work you produce must be your own work.
  • You must acknowledge the work of others when you use their ideas in your assessment, according to the conventions of your subject.
  • You must not copy work in any form, from anyone (even with their permission) or anywhere without acknowledgement.
  • You must not re-submit work you have produced yourself for previous assessments submitted for marking, either at Birkbeck or at another academic institution.
  • You must not knowingly assist another student to plagiarise, for example, by willingly giving them your own work to copy from.

If we suspect you have copied work in any form, you may be accused of plagiarism, which is an assessment offence (see the Birkbeck Assessment Offences Policy).


  • Copying and collusion
  • Purchasing ready-made assessments
  • Self-plagiarism, i.e. submitting the same piece of work for assessment twice
  • Paraphrasing without acknowledgement
  • Inadequate paraphrasing
  • Inaccurate or incomplete citing and referencing.

The last three examples are often done unintentionally and are the most common examples of student plagiarism. See the Birkbeck plagiarism guidelines for further details.


Penalties for plagiarism depend on severity, and range from:

  • formal warnings
  • deduction of marks
  • capped marks (often with a rewrite)
  • termination of registration (in the most serious cases).

Repeated incidences of plagiarism by the same student result in escalating penalties.


As it is easy to unintentionally plagiarise, you must work through the:

  • Birkbeck plagiarism guidelines
  • School/Departmental resources on appropriate citing/referencing. Learning development staff in your School/Department will tell you where these are.

Note: If you are worried about plagiarising, or cannot find the School/Departmental resources on plagiarism, please contact the subject specific tutors in your School/Department.