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    Hello.I am absolutely gutted.

    I handed my dissertation in over 4wks early in the hope my dissertation would be marked for the Sept exam board rather than having to wait for the July 2017 exam board. ( my placement was very late starting compared to my fellow students).

    I have received an email back saying my dissertation cannot be marked as they feel parts of my dissertation have been plagiarised and that as per the uni guildelines it has been sent to the examination chairperson for them to make a decision on this. I have not willingly or intentionally plagiarised my work. I have struggle so much with producing this dissertation - I was diagnosed with dyspraxia last year and struggled with this diagnosis, but felt I needed the extra support from a personal tutor with my dissertation.

    The dissertation is based on a case study of my final placement, so it's quite individual.I have not been given any other information on the areas of concern,so I have started to:
    1. Read the uni policies regarding this

    2 Printed out my dissertation and started to re-check every reference and para phasing in the hope I can try and see if I have made a huge error on referencing or not paraphased enough so it should have been a quote instead

    3. Contacted the student union rep for advise and left a message and email for my tutor to call me to discuss.4. I have spoken with my personal tutor and I hadn't realised about the "collusion" part - as my sister helped me find journals for references ( she has access to journals as she has recently graduated as a nurse) and she proof read my work - she really was hard on me with structure/presentation, in fact I hated her"help" for those weeks.

    I want to be honest and confirm my sister did proof read but certainly did not write it for me..my personal tutor has advised not to volunteer this information. I didn't think I had done anything wrong?

    I am expecting a meeting as per the policy, but will be going in blind I can only think it's incorrect referencing, not paraphasing enough -e.g should have been quoted instead or collusion.

    Any advice on what else I can do to prepare for this meeting?

    I have read the penalties for plagiarism and it's very severe. I have already collected 340 points for being a first offence, a dissertation and level 6 work. If another 200+penalty points was added depending on the type of plagiarism I would loose my degree. Best case looks like it would be a re-submission and capped at 40% I am so upset and not sure what to do. Any experience of this shared would be really appreciated. Thanks
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    Your uni should really provide specifics on the details of the alleged offence, so that you can prepare a defence or an appeal. Your Student Union rep is definitely your best port of call. You need to know how your uni's system works and they would be allowed to accompany you into the meeting at my current uni.

    As to what triggered the investigation, I would expect the uni to have told you more details. Maybe your SU rep can help get this info. Do you think the final version is better written than your other coursework as a result of your sister's proof-reading? Writing in a substantially different style or using different vocabulary than your teaching staff have seen from you before, is likely to ring an alarm bell that a third party has been involved. Plus having someone else find references for you, does rather defeat the object. The main purpose of a diss is to perform your own research and demonstrate your own knowledge. I would also advise that you shouldn't mention your sister's involvement (hopefully you didn't refer to it in the Acknowledgements).
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    (Original post by Klix88)
    Your uni should really provide specifics on the details of the alleged offence, so that you can prepare a defence or an appeal. Your Student Union rep is definitely your best port of call. You need to know how your uni's system works and they would be allowed to accompany you into the meeting at my current uni.

    As to what triggered the investigation, I would expect the uni to have told you more details. Maybe your SU rep can help get this info. Do you think the final version is better written than your other coursework as a result of your sister's proof-reading? Writing in a substantially different style or using different vocabulary than your teaching staff have seen from you before, is likely to ring an alarm bell that a third party has been involved. Plus having someone else find references for you, does rather defeat the object. The main purpose of a diss is to perform your own research and demonstrate your own knowledge. I would also advise that you shouldn't mention your sister's involvement (hopefully you didn't refer to it in the Acknowledgements).
    Thank you. I will chase up for further details today. I was really pleased the dissertation was an improvement on my past work as this time I used my allocated 30hrs personal tutor support via DSA. I was seeing my tutor twice a week and working daily in between on my dissertation. I had never had support like this before and worked hard with my tutor and sister. I asked my sister to pull references to medical journals that I could not get access to like impacts of mental health relevant to my case study. all the other references, the bulk majority I sourced myself. ( hence why I am worried I have screwed up on referencing) I didn't do an acknowledgments page as I was so sick of it I didn't want to look at it a minute longer than I had to! I take on board what you are saying regarding my sister, as per my tutor. I just hate the idea of not being completely honest, I really thought my sister's and my tutor's proof reading/ advise was ok to take. I really appreciate your advice thanks.
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    Without knowing the specifics of what the university has 'found' in your thesis, it's hard to provide advice at this stage. Klix gave good general advice: seek support from the SU and chase up the details of what has triggered the investigation.

    As for your sister's involvement with proof reading, I would have thought it was relatively common to have someone proofread a thesis & point out errors? Certainly a friend of mine proofread my undergrad diss for typos and so forth, but also highlighted paragraphs with advice like 'I think this needs rewording to more clearly demonstrate X', which I would then do. Of course she didn't write any of it for me, but merely pointed out areas where it was unclear/needed strengthening, which does sound a bit like your sister giving you advice on your structure. That said, there's a difference between a person saying 'You might want to rewrite Paragraph 5', and someone actually telling you what to write, and it's hard to know the boundary from what you describe. It may be, as Klix has said, that the uni thinks that there may be a third party involved who gave you substantial help if the writing and so forth is much better than your usual standard of coursework. Hopefully your uni get back to you soon with the details of what exactly they are concerned about.
 
 
 
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