As the Chairman of the Student Disciplinary
Committee, PROF IR DR ROSLI HAMIR is wellpositioned
to speak about plagiarism from a
disciplinary point of view.
Jimmy: In this Information Age, researching has become
more like searching, cutting and pasting for many learners.
What is your comment on this?
Prof Rosli: You are right. Many learners resort to this. Lifting
someone else’s work verbatim and then passing it off as your
own is unethical and wrong. In fact, recently we expelled a
postgraduate student who submitted 90% of someone else’s
thesis as his own. To us, this is a serious matter.
Jimmy: What types of plagiarism are common among
learners in OUM?
Prof Rosli: There are many types of plagiarism. The most
common is the cut and paste variety as you have already
mentioned. This is clear-cut plagiarism.
Word switch plagiarism happens when learners take a
sentence and change a few words, thinking that it is alright.
However, this is still considered plagiarism. To avoid
plagiarism, they should quote or paraphrase the person
Another form of plagiarism among learners is style
plagiarism. Here, even though the sentences in the paragraphs
are different, the reasoning style of the author is the same.
Idea plagiarism is also rampant. This happens when an
author’s creative ideas are lifted without acknowledgement.
Learners should learn to reference the source. To know more
about plagiarism, learners can go to www.plagiarism.org.
Jimmy: What will happen to a learner if he or she is caught
Prof Rosli: Learners who are caught plagiarising in an
assignment, project paper or thesis will face stern penalties
as mentioned in the student handbook. Learners would
have to face the Student Disciplinary Committee. Then
the university will decide on the next course of action to be taken. I want to take this opportunity to send a strong
message to learners - do not hand in plagiarised work. Once
caught, the consequences for the learner are severe.
Jimmy: What is your advice to tutors and learners on
Prof Rosli: As I said earlier, do not risk it as the punishment
is severe. To the tutors, please explain and help the learners
understand the assignment questions or the task at hand.
Our tutors are highly qualifi ed and most of them are
academicians. They should be able to guide the learners and
advise them on how to avoid plagiarism. As for the learners,
the university is a place to gain more knowledge and skills,
so learn as much as you can, polish your research skills and
submit original work. This would be more satisfying and
rewarding in the end