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Top uni official loses PhD, tutorship over plagiarism

A TOP university official has had his PhD qualification and postgraduate tutorship revoked after an investigation confirmed he plagiarized his doctoral thesis.

The penalty was handed to vice principal Huang Qing of Southwest Jiao Tong University, in Chengdu, capital of southwest Sichuan Province, teaching staff were told at a university briefing yesterday, Chengdu Business Daily reported today.

Citing teachers attending the briefing, the newspaper report said the university launched a two-round investigation after receiving plagiarism reports in December 2007.

A vote by the investigating panel on July 10 this year decided Huang had committed plagiarism in Chapter 4 of his doctoral thesis, the report said.

Huang declined to comment to Chengdu Business Daily but teachers said he had challenged the investigation's results at the briefing.

He justified the challenged content by saying the chapter included quotes from textbooks, which he believed "are all fine" to use in a thesis.

Huang is still working at the university, while the school is considering administrative punishment against him, the Chengdu Business Daily report said.

Colleagues described him as a competent, conscientious yet reserved person but some questioned how Huang, a physics major who had been vice dean of the university's applied physics department, could pursue a management doctoral degree.

Others said his plagiarism marred the university's reputation.


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