One of the early encounters with the term ‘plagiarism’, is when High School or undergraduate students are informed that their efforts at writing fall short of the Instructor’s expectations because they contain a high level of content from someone else’s published work. The gates of the writing race opened, only to let through a frenzy of misunderstanding. Misunderstanding, because in my case, before clarification, I thought plagiarism referred to some physiological syndrome! However, as I developed my writing skills, I had classified the ‘p’ word in the section of my memory both short term and deep, which also stored a close ‘cousin’: cheating.
But, what is Plagiarism? It is a particular word which has very deep ramifications. Please, visit this link for more details: https://www.checkforplagiarism.net/research/what-is-plagiarism
Word-processing: tempted to plagiarize
The ‘cut’, ‘copy’ and ‘paste’ functions in word processors carry hidden behind all that functionality, more responsibility. The responsibility for authenticity. With authentic, we as scholar-practitioners are expected to cite our sources with conventional precision. An example of the standard of citation is the APA (American Psychological Association standard, n.d.)
Helping both writers and Faculty detect if someone’s work is plagiarized, is a list of different software. Yes, a Google search brings up quite a few. Institutions of higher learning subscribe to some robust checkers such as Turnitin. (Accessible at http://www.turnitinuk.com/en_gb/)
Here is a list of other software which help determine the degree of plagiarism in a submitted work:
- Quetext, available at https://www.quetext.com
- Compare paid services with free https://www.checkforplagiarism.net/
Future Strategies I would adopt
- Every Learner will be provided a gamified multimedia module of Resources that help them understand ‘Plagiarism’ from a practical and applicative viewpoint.
- With Learner focus and collaborative initiatives, learning and scholarship become part of a continuous improvement project. It is a great benefit that we are in the Digital Age where there is almost always a software for every need. (Digital age, n.d.). Barbara Walvoord, concurrent Professor Emerita at the University of Notre Dame described Assessments as a ‘natural scholarly act’ in which we are simply asking how we can help students learn better. (Walvoord, 2010). I will be adopting a strategy of collaboration, assessment, and continuous improvement in helping my students understand plagiarism and cheating better, from a preventive viewpoint.
Detection and prevention of plagiarism must be the second layer of regulating writing quality. Prevention of plagiarism is primary and it starts with all writers and students being fully conversant with what the expectations are.
Digital age. (n.d.). Retrieved August 10th, 2017, from http://www.yourdictionary.com/digital-age Read more at http://www.yourdictionary.com/digital-age#1Sb9DvJjRHLoPHWb.99
Walvoord, B. E. (2010). Assessment clear and simple: A practical guide for institutions, departments, and general education. John Wiley & Sons.