AJC Ruling on Plagiarism of Students in Social Theory Course

On April 22 2009, the Ashesi Judicial Committee (AJC) ruled against (4) students for academic dishonesty. The students used sources from several websites that were not acknowledged in their paper for Social Theory, which constitutes plagiarism. During the hearing the students admitted to plagiarism. As stated in Ashesi’s student handbook, “Academic dishonesty includes plagiarism, unauthorized exchange of information or use of material during an examination, unauthorized transfer of information or completed work among students, use of the same paper in more than one course, unauthorized collaboration on assignments, and other unethical behavior. Disciplinary action will be taken against perpetrators of academic dishonesty”


  1. All the students received a failing grade for the Social Theory Course.
  2. 1 student received a suspension for one semester in addition to a Failing grade.
  3. Three of the students are required to attend a referencing seminar with the school librarian
  4. Three of the students are required to present a seminar on lessons learned on plagiarism at the first year orientation.

The AJC hopes that others learn from this case and avoid making the same mistakes. The AJC would especially like to advise students of the following:

  1. Learn how to reference properly and seek help and clarification from lecturers on referencing.
  2. Avoid procrastination and begin assignments early.
  3. Communicate with lecturers about any difficulties with assignments.
  4. Visit the writing center for help on writing papers