At my university, there is a lecturer who uploaded a student's final year project to his own social media account and criticized that student's English level. I am wondering, is it appropriate for that lecturer to do that? Should that lecturer be punished?

  • 1
    Was the student identified?
    – Buffy
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 12:01
  • I think so, this happened long ago.
    – Ken.Wong
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 12:06
  • Probably too late for punishment, then. Are you interested in a general answer?
    – Buffy
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 12:18
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    What jurisdiction is this in? In my country, this may be a violation of law if the student did not provide consent for their work to be made public.
    – shoover
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 17:35
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    It is not appropriate, I would think if there were a complaint to the university, if he still worked there it would be pursued. A submitted assignment belongs to the university and he would not have had authorisation from the university to share it like this. As others said, jurisdiction effects the law as well.
    – moo
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 18:13

1 Answer 1


Student work can, ethically, if suitably anonymized, be used for some purposes. But I worry about using social media. If the purpose were to somehow embarrass the student it would clearly be wrong and, hopefully, subject to sanction.

But, excerpts from student work can be used (anonymized) with an educational purpose to instruct others, students or other instructors.

It is difficult to think of social media, unless in closed/private groups, as being an appropriate venue for this, however. An investigation might be needed to determine if ethical boundaries were breached.

And, it is more than an issue of etiquette, but one of ethics. Criticism of student work should be shared with that student only unless precautions are taken to protect their privacy and reputation.

  • I agree with your answer and gave you a thumbs-up. Who owns the copyright to student assignment work? Say a student submits an essay. Is there a copyright problem in addition to the concerns identified here? I tend to stretch in the direction of protecting copyright.
    – BillOnne
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 15:21
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    @BillOnne, I doubt that has been settled sufficiently. Creative works are (most places) automatically covered by copyright. So, the question is whether student assignments are creative. But it is a consideration. I think there are issues when work is done under the direction of another.
    – Buffy
    Commented Aug 19, 2022 at 15:34

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