Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Plagiarism

Joseph Epstein, in his recent article on plagiarism, wrote "In 30 years of teaching university students I never encountered a case of plagiarism."

That simply means that he never, ever looked. The most conservative estimate I have ever read noted that ten percent of students polled have admitted to plagiarism at some point in their lives.

I have caught seven plagiarists in the last year alone (only one last semester) and my findings led to a revised, and more strict, plagiarism policy.

In sum, if you require your students to write papers and you aren't finding plagiarism, you simply aren't looking hard enough for it.

Read the entire story here.

1 comment:

Stephen said...

If we're waging a war against plagiarism, we have to accept that there is no perfect standalone system...Our teaching skills (if our egos can be set aside for a moment) and DETECTION services (plagiarism police) alone cannot effectively eradicate a practice so widely used. Try using all the resources at hand, including tools to PREVENT, and you may be at least somewhat successful in teaching best practices, even at earlier ages.