If you are suspected of exam cheating, a case will be reported to Educational Law, who will process the case on behalf of the dean. You will receive a notification that the case has been reported and that the assessment of your exam is on hold until the case is considered. If you wish to take the re-examination, you must contact studies administration. If your exam ends up being annulled, you may keep the grade from your re-examination.
Please note: Any planned oral defence in connection with the exam in question will be suspended until the case is decided. However, you may participate in all other teaching and exam activities while your case is processed.
When Educational Law receives a report of exam cheating, they assess the case and decide either to dismiss the case or to progress with the case.
If the case is dismissed, you and the person who reported the case will be notified in writing. After this, the assessment of your exam can resume and you may participate in any oral defence in connection with the exam.
If the case is taken further, you will receive a consultation letter describing the circumstances of the case. The purpose of this letter is to inform you of the details of the case and to give you the opportunity to comment on the case before a decision is reached. Along with the letter, you will receive:
If you would prefer to give your comments orally, you can request a meeting at any point. The person who reported the case and Educational Law may also request a meeting if they consider it necessary for the consideration of the case. Any such meeting will be attended by the case officer from Educational Law and the person who reported the case. You are entitled to bring a companion to the meeting.
Before the meeting, you will receive a letter with a summary of the case along with the materials in the report. After the meeting, you will receive the minutes of the meeting, which you may comment on. Please be aware that holding a meeting can extend the time it takes to process your case.
Please note: When you comment on the case, it is important that you also state whether you are due to take a project/work placement or an exchange programme (or similar) in the coming semester.
Once Educational Law has processed the report and you have been consulted, the case will be decided. Educational Law will prepare a recommendation for the dean, who will make the final decision regarding the case, after which you and the person who reported the case will be notified.
Educational Law endeavours to process all cases within 6 to 8 weeks of receiving the report.
While your case is being considered, you have the same rights as your fellow students and may take part in teaching and other exam activities at AU. However, you are not allowed to take part in an oral defence for the exam in question, as the assessment of this exam is on hold.
If you have been reported for suspected exam cheating, there is a risk that your participation in the exam in question may be declared invalid. You may therefore be registered for and participate in a re-examination for the course in question – even if a decision on the case is still pending. However, you cannot register for the re-examination yourself but must ask studies administration to be registered.
If your case is dismissed or you receive a warning and, in the meantime, you have taken a re-examination, you are entitled to keep the highest grade.
If the case results in disciplinary measures and these are carried out, you are then able to continue your studies on the same terms as all other students. This means that no special measures should be taken, nor should you be under any stricter supervision in connection with future exams.
All cases of exam cheating are confidential, and all university employees with knowledge of these cases thus have a duty of confidentiality.
If you cheat or help others to cheat in an exam, it can have serious consequences for you. At AU, cases of exam cheating are processed according to the university’s disciplinary rules – which apply regardless of whether you violated exam rules accidentally or intentionally (see the list of the different types of exam cheating above).
If you are found to have cheated, you will be penalised based on an overall assessment of the gravity of the offence and the type of exam cheating you engaged in. In cases of plagiarism in written exam papers, emphasis is also placed on the amount of text produced by the student compared with the amount of plagiarised text.
Exam cheating can result in the following disciplinary measures:
A warning is the least severe disciplinary measure. If you receive a warning, your exam paper will be resubmitted for assessment. If you have taken a re-examination in the meantime, you may keep the highest grade.
If your exam is annulled, you will have used an examination attempt but the exam paper in question will not be assessed. If you have already received a grade for this paper, the grade will be discarded. You may take the re-examination under normal conditions after this, providing you have enough examination attempts remaining.
If you are expelled from the university for a given period, you will not have access to teaching or exam activities at AU from the date of the decision to the end of the expulsion period. In this period, you are therefore unable to take part in any exams or teaching – or any other activities – at AU.
After the exclusion period has ended, you are entitled to resume your academic activities and will be automatically re-registered as an active student.
Permanent expulsion is the most severe disciplinary measure. If you are permanently expelled from the university, you will not be able to participate in any form of teaching, exams or other university activities at any point in the future – neither on the degree programme in question or any other degree programme at AU. The permanent expulsion begins when you are informed about the decision.
The penalties for exam cheating depend on a specific and individual assessment of the case – as well as the type of exam cheating in question. Some types of exam cheating are viewed as aggravating circumstances and will be penalised more severely than others. Read more below.
In cases of plagiarism in written exam papers, emphasis is placed on the amount of text produced by the student compared with the amount of plagiarised text. If you cheat in a major written assignment, such as your Bachelor’s project or Master’s thesis, this is considered an aggravating circumstance.
If you use materials or aids not permitted at an on-site written exam, this is considered an aggravating circumstance.
If you submit an exam paper that you have bought or had another person write for you, this is considered an aggravating circumstance and, as a general rule, is penalised by expulsion. If your exam paper was written by a fellow student, that student might be punished for aiding and abetting cheating in exams.
If an entire, cohesive page of your exam paper is plagiarised, this is considered an aggravating circumstance. This will typically result in a more severe penalty than the exam simply being annulled.
If two or more pages of your exam paper is plagiarised (across your whole assignment), this is also considered an aggravating circumstance. This will typically result in a more severe penalty than the exam simply being annulled.
If you have been penalised for exam cheating in a previous examination period, this will – as a rule – affect the severity of the disciplinary measure you receive, as it will count as an aggravating circumstance. This applies regardless of whether you were penalised for exam cheating in the same subject or in a different subject.
From the time the case is reported until it is decided, the person who made the report (the examiner) may not comment on matters of case processing and/or possible disciplinary measures. If you have questions about the processing of your case or the severity of possible penalties, please contact Educational Law (firstname.lastname@example.org), who process cases of suspected exam cheating (Read more about Educational Law).
The person who reported the case may only comment on the reason you were reported but has no obligation to do so and may therefore choose not to comment. You will, however, receive a copy of the report, which will outline why you have been reported for suspected exam cheating.
If you need help to get an overview of the process if you are reported and how the case may affect your study programme, you are welcome to contact the student counsellors in your faculty.
I have been reported for suspected exam cheating. What happens now?
You will receive a letter of receipt from Educational Law, and, as soon as the relevant case officer has looked at your case, you will receive a consultation letter, which will invite you to comment on the case.
I have been reported for suspected exam cheating. Will I be allowed to tell my side of the story?
You are always able to send your comments to Educational Law, either before or after you receive your consultation letter.
I have been reported for suspected exam cheating, but I am due to start a project/work placement or an exchange programme next semester. What should I do?
You should notify Educational Law as soon as possible that you are due to start a project/work placement or an exchange programme next semester, so that they can take this into account when they process your case.
Can I take the re-examination on the course for which I have been reported for suspected exam cheating?
Yes. Even though you have been reported for suspected exam cheating, you have the same rights as all other students. You may therefore take the re-examination on the course for which you have been reported.
I cannot register for the re-examination on Student Self Service. Is this correct?
Yes. You cannot register yourself for the re-examination on the course for which you have been reported. Please contact your studies administration team, who will register you for the re-examination.
Can I remain anonymous while my case is processed if I took the exam using a number and not my name?
No. You cannot remain anonymous while your case is processed, and the person who reported the case will also be told your name.
Will my other teachers and fellow students know that I have been reported and which disciplinary measures were imposed?
No. All cases of suspected exam cheating are confidential. The parties involved are therefore not allowed to disclose any information about the case, the case processing or any disciplinary measures to others.
Will it be stated on my exam certificate that I have been penalised for exam cheating?
No. It will not be stated on your exam certificate.
I have been reported for suspected exam cheating. Am I allowed to take the oral part of the exam for the course in question?
No. Because the assessment of your exam has been suspended while the Educational Law team considers your case, you may not participate in the oral part of the exam. If the report is rejected, or if you receive a warning, the oral defence will be rescheduled to allow you to complete the exam for the course.
If you are considering cheating because of personal, study-related, family-related or other reasons, don’t do it. Ask for help and find another way.
Find help and contact information here:
For good advice on how to improve your academic and personal well-being, check out studerende.au.dk/en/boost-your-student-life.