DETECTION OR PREVENTION OF CHEATING & PLAGIARISM

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:

 

Future Strategies I would adopt

  1. Every Learner will be provided a gamified multimedia module of Resources that help them understand ‘Plagiarism’ from a practical and applicative viewpoint.
  2. 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.

SYNTHESIS

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.

References

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.

 

Impact of Technology and Multimedia

Technology and Multimedia practices sit on the super-highway crossroad which assists Scholar Practitioners to navigate terrains previously unreached. The advent of neuroscientific research and application brought a better understanding to learning theories and how people learn. Thus, came a leveraging of the Web and what is now known as Web 2.0 technologies.

The increasing use of the internet with activities such as Digital Design, Communication & Collaboration, and a platform for the growth of online learning has steadily evolved from the beginning of the 20th Century. Over the years, the practice has proliferated as different specialties emerged in what could be called a community of practitioners. These practitioners include:

  1. Instructional Designers
  2. Educators & Researchers
  3. Institutional Leaders
  4. Software Developers
  5. Hardware Developers
  6. Writers & Publishers
  7. Students/learners

The list goes on, but these are probably the drivers of the Educational technology economy and development.

The technology tool should however not be allowed to take over the process, but as a catalyst should support institutional process effectiveness and advancement. One such achievement in this direction is the Learning Management System (LMS). A basic set of technology tools for teaching and learning. What LMS’s do is to bring a collection of these tools into the collaborative sphere of Institution, Instructor, Learner and the community of inquiry. (COI) (Boettcher & Conrad, 2016, pp. 45-48).

Important Considerations

Prior to implementing any technology initiative within the Educational context, the Stakeholder should do the following:

  1. Evaluate and understand the needs. (Contexts, Learners, Program expectations)
  2. Review best practices in other similar environments.
  3. Ease of use and interface design
  4. Required preparation and training
  5. Return on Investment
  6. Vendor availability and support history
  7. Software/ hardware robustness
  8. Learning Community focus and quality of interaction

As I move forward in my career, my bias for technology is based on best practice, result-orientation,

Young student with virtual futuristic interface simulating digital blackboard.

and openness to assessment. I will always be mindful of the eight factors I listed above, but I will also be practical. With a primary focus for Student engagement, learning and success, I will use whatever tools are available to achieve quality results within agreed time-frames.

 

References

Boettcher, J. V., & Conrad, R. (2016). The online teaching survival guide: Simple and practical pedagogical tips (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Bates, A. W., & Poole, G. (2003). Effective Teaching with Technology in Higher Education: Foundations for Success. Jossey-Bass, An Imprint of Wiley. 10475 Crosspoint Blvd, Indianapolis, IN 46256.

Chumley-Jones, H. S., Dobbie, A., & Alford, C. L. (2002). Web‐based learning: Sound educational method or hype? A review of the evaluation literature. Academic medicine, 77(10), S86-S93.

Mayer, R. E. (Ed.). (2005). The Cambridge handbook of multimedia learning. Cambridge university press.