You are here: Home Current Students Good Academic Practice

Good Academic Practice

aristoteles ©hild

Academic integrity and attention to the fundamentals of good academic practice are essential prerequisites for all academic work and a guarantee for high quality research.

Plagiarism, AI & LLM

plagiarism, n.
"The action or practice of taking someone else's work, idea, etc.,
and passing it off as one's own; literary theft." 
Oxford English Dictionary,, 28.04.2020

In the past years, we've seen an uptick in cases in which full pages, not just individual passages, have been copied from the internet or other mostly electronic sources into term papers and theses, without appropriate citation. This fulfils the definition of plagiarism.

Moreover, we recognize both the chances and the challenges of Generative AI and Large Language Models such as ChatGPT and engage with the potentials of these new technologies in our classrooms and beyond. We also see the disruptive potential given that much of our teaching and academic work is text-based and involves the reflective and independent production of text, which is an indispensable part of competence development and examinations. In order to ensure that the core features of our academic training (competences in reading, writing, and thinking critically and analytically) remain strong, generative AI and Large Language Models such as ChatGPT are not allowed

  • when composing text (e.g. in term papers or essays),
  • when drafting the structure of a term paper or essay,
  • when developing methodologies.

AI and LLMs may of course be used as search engines or for collecting data and information. Transparence is of paramount importance. If you have used AI in your term paper according to the rules, please add an explanation of how, where, and to what extent.

Please also note the university's general information on academic integrity as well as the Regulations of the University of Freiburg on Safeguarding Academic Integrity.

Guidelines for Academic Papers

⚠️ Each written academic paper (term paper, essay) must be accompanied, without request, by a signed  pledge of academic integrity from the English Department.

Literary and Cultural Studies

These guidelines concern written assignments in the English department. For formal considerations concerning formatting and citation, please refer to the 7th edition of the MLA Style Sheet.

Assuming ca. 400 words per page and 2.0 line spacing, the following is expected:

  • Term paper Proseminar: 6.000 words (ca. 15 pages)
  • Term paper Hauptseminar (B.A.): 7.500 – 8.500 words (ca. 18 – 20 pages)
  • Term paper Masterseminar: 9.000 – 10.000 words (ca. 20 – 25 pages)
  • Bachelor's thesis: 14.000 – 15.000 words (ca. 35 – 40 pages)
  • Master's thesis (M.A.): 32.000 words (ca. 80 pages)
  • Zulassungsarbeit (Staatsexamen) and Master's thesis (M.Ed.): 24.000 words (ca. 60 pages) 



Last updated: Aug. 3, 2023