In the given case, it is mentioned that, a student studying at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was dismissed from the school due to his plagiarized work. However, the student opposed in his suit against the university, by mentioning that he was suffering from multiple personality disorder. Hence, one of his personalities committed the crime of plagiarism, which the dominant personality was totally unaware of it.
Now in the given situation, it is important to determine that whether the student is actually suffering from multiple personality disorder. A team of specialist doctors who are dealing into such disorders should carry out different tests in order to determine this disorder. They can observe the student over a period of one week or even one month, without informing him, and try to find out whether he is actually suffering from it. The doctors in addition, should even try to find out for the multiple personalities that exist within the given individual.
It might happen that, the student is suffering from Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). In such cases, a person does not split himself into different identities intentionally or purposefully, but due to this disorder, he changes himself into another person just for the sake of serving the surrounding environment (Aqil, Lippeveld, & Hozumi, 2009). The presence of DID can be known through the identification of two distinct identities, wherein the same individual would be demonstrating multiple personalities within himself.
The personalities or these identities try to control the person’s behavior, due to which he is unable to recall his original self. The symptoms include depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, frequent headaches, and self-mutilation. Individual suffering from DID often pass through depersonalization, de-realization, amnesia, and identity confusion (Graeber et al., 2003).
If these symptoms are found in the given individual and the physicians also get the necessary evidence of multiple personalities, the student should be reinstated to the given university. But, if the student is found to be forging into his case, and there are no significant evidences found regarding the existence of multiple personalities disorder, the decision of expelling from the university should not be changed. Instead strict actions should be taken against him, and the school authorities should try to find out the reason of performing such actions.
Aqil, A, Lippeveld, T., and Hozumi, D. (2009). PRISM framework: A paradigm shift for designing, strengthening and evaluating routine health information systems. Health Policy and Planning, 24, 217–228.
Graeber, D.A., Moyers, T. B., Griffith, G., Guajardo, E., and Tonigan, S. (2003). A pilot study comparing motivational interviewing and an educational intervention in patients with schizophrenia and alcohol use disorders. Community Mental Health, 39(3), 189-202.