The Student Room Group

Ethical Research Misconduct (continued discussion)

Original post by FMCDST
But everything Ive read says its misconduct not to have it signed before doing any research. I’m sure I’ll be thrown out I just want them to tell me soon as it’s making me ill.
My uni is throwing me out for it
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
My uni is throwing me out for it


Hiya, I've split your post into a new thread so that we can follow the conversation more easily. Hope that's okay.
the thread you posted in was from over a year ago.

Could you tell us more about your situation so that we can help?
Reply 2
TW: physical attack and sexual assault

This academic year was pretty much traumatic. I had a difficult time the year before so i had to retake modules and had a year break. I was stalked by the person who sexually assaulted me many years ago. Informed police they did nothing. Let uni know as i was struggling. Was in therapy. Was randomly attacked and hit in the head multiple times, causing severe trauma and to frightened to go to campus. Uni was not understanding at all. Took extensions. The trauma and anxiety and ptsd caused me to shut away. My only aim was to submit everything and get it done. I submitted my dissertation in june. I had 100 participants gave them an easy questionnaire.
I didn’t speak to my supervisor much because of all the trauma, and the anxiety uni caused. I didn’t submit an ethics form because i forgot, i didnt even realise i needed one. Then uni said i plagrised my work because i used complex methods and other reasons. Was cleared for plagiarism. Now this misconduct because i didnt submit an ethics form and used human participants. I was left in the dark for 3 months. Multiple emails no advice nothong. And now i will have an interview in a couple of weeks. I am so scared and frightened. The way the uni has treated me i am sure they will kick me out the uni. They failed my dissertation as they said it was too much of a sociology paper instead of philosophy

Feeling too too low and not wanting to wake up anymore.
Reply 3
:mad:
Original post by 04MR17
Hiya, I've split your post into a new thread so that we can follow the conversation more easily. Hope that's okay.
the thread you posted in was from over a year ago.

Could you tell us more about your situation so that we can help?
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
:mad:

Hello, thank you for quoting me so that I got a notification, I didn't see your message from last week due to this, I will read it now.
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
TW: physical attack and sexual assault

This academic year was pretty much traumatic. I had a difficult time the year before so i had to retake modules and had a year break. I was stalked by the person who sexually assaulted me many years ago. Informed police they did nothing. Let uni know as i was struggling. Was in therapy. Was randomly attacked and hit in the head multiple times, causing severe trauma and to frightened to go to campus. Uni was not understanding at all. Took extensions. The trauma and anxiety and ptsd caused me to shut away. My only aim was to submit everything and get it done. I submitted my dissertation in june. I had 100 participants gave them an easy questionnaire.

I didn’t speak to my supervisor much because of all the trauma, and the anxiety uni caused. I didn’t submit an ethics form because i forgot, i didnt even realise i needed one. Then uni said i plagrised my work because i used complex methods and other reasons. Was cleared for plagiarism. Now this misconduct because i didnt submit an ethics form and used human participants. I was left in the dark for 3 months. Multiple emails no advice nothong. And now i will have an interview in a couple of weeks. I am so scared and frightened. The way the uni has treated me i am sure they will kick me out the uni. They failed my dissertation as they said it was too much of a sociology paper instead of philosophy

Feeling too too low and not wanting to wake up anymore.

Right, I'm going to keep my advice practical as I think that's what you need most here.

- Doesn't matter that they failed your dissertation, that isn't relevant to the misconduct hearing.
- Doesn't matter that they accused plagiarism, that isn't relevant to the misconduct hearing.

What is important is the ethics form.
If you conducted research using the name of the university, or logo, then you have breached the university code of conduct.
You need to accept that, because you signed to adhere to it when you joined the university.

What you need to use for your defence is that your emails were ignored. Provide a list of emails you sent, about the ethics form that went without reply. Save them all as PDFs and document.

If you go with the defence of "I was left in the dark", then the university will likely bring up teaching and modules in 2nd and 3rd year which explicitly discuss ethics. You will likely have missed these due to the circumstances described above. In reality if we were much earlier in your degree I'd be telling you to take a leave of absence. Perhaps it's worth reflecting in the meeting that this would have been a better option for you.
Reply 6
Original post by 04MR17
Right, I'm going to keep my advice practical as I think that's what you need most here.

- Doesn't matter that they failed your dissertation, that isn't relevant to the misconduct hearing.
- Doesn't matter that they accused plagiarism, that isn't relevant to the misconduct hearing.

What is important is the ethics form.
If you conducted research using the name of the university, or logo, then you have breached the university code of conduct.
You need to accept that, because you signed to adhere to it when you joined the university.

What you need to use for your defence is that your emails were ignored. Provide a list of emails you sent, about the ethics form that went without reply. Save them all as PDFs and document.

If you go with the defence of "I was left in the dark", then the university will likely bring up teaching and modules in 2nd and 3rd year which explicitly discuss ethics. You will likely have missed these due to the circumstances described above. In reality if we were much earlier in your degree I'd be telling you to take a leave of absence. Perhaps it's worth reflecting in the meeting that this would have been a better option for you.


I didn’t send any emails to lecturers enquiring about the ethics form . I didn’t use the unis logo it was just a questionnaire with my dissertation title.
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
I didn’t send any emails to lecturers enquiring about the ethics form . I didn’t use the unis logo it was just a questionnaire with my dissertation title.

Did you use the university's name?
Have you read the code of conduct?
When you wrote "Multiple emails no advice nothong", did you mean emails to your dissertation supervisor that were not replied to? I had assumed this but realise it could have been a few things.
Reply 8
Original post by 04MR17
Did you use the university's name?
Have you read the code of conduct?
When you wrote "Multiple emails no advice nothong", did you mean emails to your dissertation supervisor that were not replied to? I had assumed this but realise it could have been a few things.


No I didn’t use the universitys name or logo

I haven’t only after the meetings were announced

The multiple emails regarding when these meetings are, and asking student guild for advice about what to do. That is what i mean by multiple emails.
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
No I didn’t use the universitys name or logo

I haven’t only after the meetings were announced

The multiple emails regarding when these meetings are, and asking student guild for advice about what to do. That is what i mean by multiple emails.


Using the University's logo and name are not the issue.

The issue is that whenever you do any legitimate research that uses human participants, you need independent ethical oversight of your research proposal and approval for that research. You need a panel of experts to satisfy themselves that your technique is appropriate to the question you are trying to answer, that no harm will come to participants, that you will use their data securely and correctly etc. They will also check that you have a proper method for informing participants about thier participation how thier data will be used and stored, how they can withdraw etc.

By going ahead without ethical approval you have no evidence that your research was safe for participants, or that you were taking proper care of them, asking them for legitimate information, that you are holding their data securely etc.

Hopefully, you weren't asking about any sensitive subjects, you did inform your participants about why you were collecting their data, how they could withdraw and that their data has been stored and used securely, and your research question was legitimate and answerable by the collection method you used. You should prepare to evidence all that, and then the lack of a form becomes a purely administrative issue.

If you can demonstrate it was just an administrative error, and there were no ethical issues in your research, then you stand a chance of being able to ask to redo the dissertation.
Original post by Upsetmonkey23
No I didn’t use the universitys name or logo

I haven’t only after the meetings were announced

The multiple emails regarding when these meetings are, and asking student guild for advice about what to do. That is what i mean by multiple emails.

Your second answer is contradictory.
I hope you have now read the code of conduct and are able to identify whether or not you have breached it.

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