If someone’s Master’s degree is revoked for plagiarism after they got their PhD, will the university consequently revoke the PhD?

I ask because in many places, holding a bachelor’s or Master’s degree is a requirement for admission to a PhD. What happens if those degrees are revoked– does this forfeit the admission to the PhD, and hence the PhD itself?

This question already has an answer here:

So, I have a sentence in a paper I’m writing that looks like this:

This result was first discovered by Person X (PaperX 1915).

The issue is, the paper I cite, let’s call it Paper X, written by Person X, is in German, and I have not read it. I know that the result is there, because another paper, let’s say Paper Y, also cited Paper X and stated that this result was there.

Do I need to cite Paper Y as well as Paper X, since it is where I found the citation and the result? Or is this not necessary, as the information which I am repeating from Paper Y is information that they themselves repeat from Paper X, which I cite?

I am about to submit a paper in which one of the algorithms I used is heavily based on the code available on one of the TensowFlow tutorials. In fact, I mostly copied the code from the page and made the necessary modifications for my specific case. I did cite, in the paper, both TensorFlow and the page, and disclosed that the neural net architecture I was using was based on the one on the page. The licensing terms of the code (Apache 2.0) mention that the user is free to build upon the code and redistribute it.

I am not in CS, and am applying the model to a specific problem in my field. However, in copying the code (which I believe will not be disclosed) I am afraid I might be doing academic misconduct. However, on the other hand, if that was the case, using open-source libraries would also be frowned upon, given that the user is essentially copying code.

Will I be committing academic misconduct or anything that is ethically frowned upon in academia by submitting results parts of which were based on copied code?

PS: In response to a comment, I cited TensorFlow and the webpage in the paper, which will be published if accepted, but the code itself (which was heavily based on the code available in the webpage) won’t be posted anywhere (as far as I know).

I have a hard time understanding statements such as:

Scientist X discovered Y in 1960 and was subsequently rediscovered by Scientist Z in 1980.

How does one prove that plagiarism has not taken place? This is also extensively observed in some really old math theorems, chemistry and so on. How does one prove that the similar work produced was as a result of one’s own independent work and not resulting from another’s. Even if something was re-discovered subsequently, why is it even given merit?

I am about to submit a paper in which one of the algorithms I used is heavily based on the code available on one of the TensowFlow tutorials. In fact, I mostly copied the code from the page and made the necessary modifications for my specific case. I did cite both TensorFlow and the page, and disclosed that the neural net architecture I was using was based on the one in the page. The licensing terms of the code (Apache 2.0) mention that the user is free to build upon the code and redistribute it.

I am not in CS, and am applying the model to a specific problem in my field. However, in copying the code (which I believe will not be disclosed) I am afraid I might be doing academic misconduct. However, on the other hand, if that was the case, using open-source libraries would also be frowned upon, given that the user is essentially copying code.

Will I be committing academic misconduct or anything that is ethically frowned upon in academia by submitting results part of which were based on copied code?

When reading submissions by students, for example coding assignments or bachelor theses, I stumble upon code or text not originally written by the students themselves, usually not referenced properly (see the edit below). After being confronted with this, I often hear or read statements like:

I usually tend to see these statements as lame excuses, because I thought it would be common sense how not to plagiarize, but maybe they are right that they really do not know it better. It seems like they think the correct way to avoid plagiarism is to modify the source even more instead of doing it on their own in the first place.

Our usual approach to tackle this problem is to state that we do not want
plagiarism, search for indications of plagiarism and then have endless
discussion about it afterwards.

There are methods to circumvent this partially, for example by providing
individualized tasks
, and our university also provides workshops that teach you for example how a reference list should be built, but I am searching for ideas for the everyday teaching (programming labs, supervising students writing a thesis…) to promote the mindset that taking the text or code from someone else and modifying it is not the correct way, especially when it comes to graded submissions or publications.

EDIT: After receiving multiple comments about what I am worried about is not plagiarism, I would like to explain this aspect a little more by means of some examples:

  • There is no reference at all: This is clearly plagiarism, period.

  • The reference is not sufficient: This is the Wikipedia case from above. Having only “Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/” in the list of references without any indication which part of the text is from which article and which part is written by the student does not help at all and is in my opinion nearly as bad as having no reference at all.

  • There is a proper reference: As others have noted, this is not plagiarism. Still, in the context of grading, we have to look deeper:

    • Written exam: Everyone should agree that a student should fail an exam if he copies the solution by another student even if he writes “This solution was copied from the student sitting next to me.”

    • Code Assignments: I had cases where students wrote “I copied this part from …, because I was not able to do it myself and the rest of the program would not work without it”. This is totally fine for me, but the student should not expect to receive points for the copied part, but only for the other parts written by himself. The same holds for code copied from other sources and modified afterwards.

    • Lengthy text passages: This is the example of copying significant parts of a Wikipedia article, again. But this is already covered in several other questions.

When reading submissions by students, for example coding assignments or bachelor theses, I stumble upon code or text not originally written by the students themselves, usually not referenced properly (see the edit below). After being confronted with this, I often hear or read statements like:

I usually tend to see these statements as lame excuses, because I thought it would be common sense how not to plagiarize, but maybe they are right that they really do not know it better. It seems like they think the correct way to avoid plagiarism is to modify the source even more instead of doing it on their own in the first place.

Our usual approach to tackle this problem is to state that we do not want
plagiarism, search for indications of plagiarism and then have endless
discussion about it afterwards.

There are methods to circumvent this partially, for example by providing
individualized tasks
, and our university also provides workshops that teach you for example how a reference list should be built, but I am searching for ideas for the everyday teaching (programming labs, supervising students writing a thesis…) to promote the mindset that taking the text or code from someone else and modifying it is not the correct way, especially when it comes to graded submissions or publications.

EDIT: After receiving multiple comments about what I am worried about is not plagiarism, I would like to explain this aspect a little more by means of some examples:

  • There is no reference at all: This is clearly plagiarism, period.

  • The reference is not sufficient: This is the Wikipedia case from above. Having only “Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/” in the list of references without any indication which part of the text is from which article and which part is written by the student does not help at all and is in my opinion nearly as bad as having no reference at all.

  • There is a proper reference: As others have noted, this is not plagiarism. Still, in the context of grading, we have to look deeper:

    • Written exam: Everyone should agree that a student should fail an exam if he copies the solution by another student even if he writes “This solution was copied from the student sitting next to me.”

    • Code Assignments: I had cases where students wrote “I copied this part from …, because I was not able to do it myself and the rest of the program would not work without it”. This is totally fine for me, but the student should not expect to receive points for the copied part, but only for the other parts written by himself. The same holds for code copied from other sources and modified afterwards.

    • Lengthy text passages: This is the example of copying significant parts of a Wikipedia article, again. But this is already covered in several other questions.

In the context of plagiarism, I often hear or read statements like:

I usually tend to see these statements as lame excuses, because I thought it would be common sense how not to plagiarize, but maybe they are right that they really do not know it better. It seems like they think the correct way to avoid plagiarism is to modify the source even more instead of doing it on their own in the first place.

Our usual approach to tackle this problem is to state that we do not want
plagiarism, search for indications of plagiarism and then have endless
discussion about it afterwards.

There are methods to circumvent this partially, for example by providing
individualized tasks
, and our university also provides workshops that teach you for example how a reference list should be built, but I am searching for ideas for the everyday teaching (programming labs, supervising students writing a thesis…) to promote the mindset that taking the text or code from someone else and modifying it is not the correct way, especially when it comes to graded submissions or publications.

In the context of plagiarism, I often hear or read statements like:

I usually tend to see these statements as lame excuses, because I thought it would be common sense how not to plagiarize, but maybe they are right that they really do not know it better. It seems like they think the correct way to avoid plagiarism is to modify the source even more instead of doing it on their own in the first place.

Our usual approach to tackle this problem is to state that we do not want
plagiarism, search for indications of plagiarism and then have endless
discussion about it afterwards.

There are methods to circumvent this partially, for example by providing
individualized tasks
, and our university also provides workshops that teach you for example how a reference list should be built, but I am searching for ideas for the everyday teaching (programming labs, supervising students writing a thesis…) to promote the mindset that taking the text or code from someone else and modifying it is not the correct way, especially when it comes to graded submissions or publications.

I was reviewing a paper related to my field (computational fluid dynamics) a while ago and, while reading a part of the methodology section where the numerical scheme and the equations were explained, I had a weird sense of déjà-vu. Regretfully, I found out that the author had plagiarized about three to four paragraph from a paper published two years ago. What was even crazier is that the author had plagiarized me, since the paragraph he had copied were from a paper I actually had previously published, thus explaining the feeling of déjà-vu.

I obviously noted that in my review and in my message to the editor, but I did not reject the paper directly. I acted this way since it was in the methodology section and related to mathematical formulas and really did not affect the outcome of the result. Was I in the wrong? Should such small plagiarism warrant instant rejection or is it sufficient to point them out and let the editor deal with that?