• Kyodo News


Dokkyo Medical University on Friday joined the ranks of universities found to have professors who review doctoral theses receiving money from degree earners.

The private medical university said 34 of its professors admitted receiving an estimated total of ¥40 million in cash or gift certificates from degree earners, mainly graduate students, as an “honorarium” between January 2001 and March 2008.

Similar practices have been reported by Yokohama City University, Hokkaido University and Tokyo Medical University.

It was common practice at Dokkyo Medical University for a degree earner to provide ¥10,000 to ¥100,000 to a professor in charge of reviewing his or her thesis, according to the university. The largest amount was ¥300,000.

The university denied that unfair practices were involved in the thesis-reviewing process and said that cash and coupons were delivered to the professors after the review was completed.

Dokkyo Medical University said it deplores the practice, which it said has damaged the dignity of its doctoral degrees.

The university said it will ban professors and degree applicants from taking or sending money or goods in connection with such reviews.

The Dokkyo Group of Academic Institutions, which runs the medical university, said Dokkyo Medical University launched a survey late last year after a money scandal at Yokohama City University was reported earlier that year.

The survey covered 63 professors, all of whom responded. Of them 34 acknowledged receiving honoraria from degree earners.

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