I recently attended a lecture with highly technical content. One of the middle slides in the deck had a particular phrase that reminded me of something that I had read several years before.
It took me a few minutes, but I found the original source (another slide deck) and am shocked to find that the professor lifted 35 slides verbatim from the original source. The University holds students accountable for plagiarism and strictly defines plagiarism such that this clearly fits. The slides were used verbatim and no credit or reference was provided. Further, logos were added and color schemes were changed to make make them look slightly more like original content.
What should I do? This professor has a professional full time job and I can imagine this getting swept under the rug, but this is clearly plagiarism and is spelled out very clearly in the student conduct code.
Is this an overreaction or should I pursue this? This is confounded by the fact that I am very disappointed by the rigor of the course and feel like the professor lacks adequate technical background to teach the course (I guess my suspicions came true). I'm really busy at work so don't want to deal with a big todo, but believe this really discredits the academic integrity of the course.
Additional content in response to comments:
The University defines plagiarism as "Using another writer's words without proper citation." There is no proper citation given here, and these are not educational materials. This is 35 slides from someone else's tutorial presentation.
I do not believe that the professor and the author of the original content have a relationship. I have emailed the author to enquire about any permissions or relationship. Still, even with permission, this is still plagiarism as defined be most people and as defined by the University.
All original works in the US are implicitly copyright protected, so there is also a copyright issue, but this is not currently my concern, though it could be of interest to the original author. I have emailed him, so this is up to him.
This is a US institution and is a top tier highly respected school. I am also not a lay student, but a Ph.D. with a degree from a top tier university who has served as a faculty member at two top tier universities (including this one). I have also taught undergraduate courses in the past. I have never engaged in this type of plagiarism, have never known colleagues to do so, and am shocked that so many people suggest this is par for the course in teaching. My doctorate is from a school that prides itself on its honor code and takes honor code violations very seriously and I have served on the honor council and deliberated on a case of plagiarism in the past. I really am shocked by this incident.
Response from Original Author of the Slides:
I have received a response from the author of the slides and he states that the work is his original work, that there are no additional authors of the work, that no one has been given permission to present the work, and that he believes his copyright on the work has been infringed upon. He has requested additional information to assert his claim on the copyright.