Thesis advisers still liable: MOE

ACADEMIC ETHICS: Universities should improve their mechanisms to ensure the quality of graduate theses and hold faculty accountable for breaches, the MOE said

Taipei Times
Date: Aug 12, 2020
By: Dennis Xie / Staff writer, with CNA

A children’s science education book, titled “Go Go Giwas,” which is available in 16 Aboriginal languages, is displayed alongside scanning pens and promotional materials at an event in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Lin Hsiao-yun, Taipei Times

Although some universities have been requiring students to take full responsibility for breaches of academic ethics, their thesis advisers should still be held accountable for such breaches, the Ministry of Education (MOE) said yesterday.

Amid rising cases of thesis plagiarism in Taiwan’s higher education, many universities have begun requiring students to sign an affidavit prior to the oral defense of their thesis to state their willingness to take full legal liability should any breaches of academic ethics be found in their theses or written reports, the ministry said.

However, thesis advisers are still liable for the responsibilities related to their position, regardless of whether a student has signed such an affidavit, given that they are required to conduct regular meetings with students and keep them on the right track, it said.

Academic institutions also need to accept accountability to improve their mechanisms for quality assurance for graduate theses in the face of ethics breaches, it added.

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