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Good Academic Practice

Guidelines for Good Academic Practice at the UdK Berlin

The fundamental principle of academic work is honesty to oneself and others. This also forms the ethical standard and basis for the various policies on academic professionalism across disciplines. A core mission of the university is to impart these fundamental principles to the students and academic staff. While the digital revolution has simplified plagiarism, so too has it become easier to uncover it. Scientific misconduct ranges from full plagiarism and intentional falsification of data to publications that have in part been identified as unscientific or scientifically unethical and therefore an item of discussion within the academic community. These grey areas are evidence that the indispensable requirements for academic work are not completely straightforward. For this reason, it is essential to consider cultures specific to each field when formulating principles for good academic practice that are to apply to all academic disciplines and be authoritative for all qualification work undertaken at the university. Academic misconduct hurts not only the reputation of the perpetrator but damages that of the university and academia as a whole. The recommendations of the DFG for “Self-Regulation in Science” from 17 June 1998 and the joint positional paper of 9 July 2012 by the German General Faculty Association (Allgemeiner Fakultätentag, AFT), the Faculty Association and the German Association for University Professors and Lecturers (Deutscher Hochschulverband, DHV) are the foundation for the core principles of good academic practice at the UdK Berlin.

You can download the guidelines here: PDF 



The local ombudsman, appointed in accordance with the requirements of the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG) is your first point of contact at a university for questions relating to good academic practice or a suspected case of academic misconduct. At the UdK Berlin, the ombudsman is Prof. Dr. Barbara Wittmann ( and her deputy is Prof. Dr. Michael Häfner (m.haefner_