With an ever expanding
landscape of the number of people seeking education around the world, scholars
and learning institutions have labored to put out learning material out there
so as it can be easily accessible on demand. With this a new danger has arisen
that needs curtailing, plagiarism. Major technological advancements have
ensured access to education is a lot easier than earlier on but with it the
risk of plagiarism and how to detect it has been made harder. In this essay we
will look into what plagiarism is, its various forms and how it can be
prevented to ensure that all scholars are complying and not cheating.
to the oxford dictionary (n.d.),’The
practice of taking someone else’s work or ideas and passing them off as one’s
own’. Harvard University (n.d.) expounds, ‘In academic writing, it is
considered plagiarism to draw any idea or any language from someone else
without adequately crediting that source in your paper. It doesn’t matter
whether the source is a published author, another student, a Web site without
clear authorship, a Web site that sells academic papers, or any other person:
Taking credit for anyone else’s work is stealing, and it is unacceptable in all
academic situations, whether you do it intentionally or by accident.’
As stated by,
Plagiarism.org (2017), ‘According to
U.S. law, the answer is yes. The expression of original ideas is considered
intellectual property and is protected by copyright laws, just like original
inventions. Almost all forms of expression fall under copyright protection as long
as they are recorded in some way (such as a book or a computer file)’.
stated definitions w can clearly see that plagiarism is a very serious offence
that is wide on the meaning and also can narrow down to phrases or just a
single word if it can be shown to be used by a specific author and not a
commonly used word. These shows that plagiarism can take various form. Lifting
whole works and claiming the to be your own when they are not , taking ideas
form a different author and using your own words to paraphrase and pass it off
as your own original work without citations. Self-plagiarism is also another
form of the vice whereby an author republishes their own work and carries it as
new without referencing or citing the earlier work.
to University of New south Wales Australia (n.d.), Plagiarism includes
copying materials, ideas or concepts from a book, article, report or other
written document, presentation, composition, artwork, design, drawing,
circuitry, computer program or software, website, internet, other electronic
resource, or another person’s assignment, without appropriate acknowledgement.
Other forms include videos or images collected and used whether from
public sources or private sources without attributing the original sources.
Another form often abused is when a citation is from a secondary source but without
properly acknowledging the secondary source.
As Kami Day argued In
“Time Is Not on Our Side: Plagiarism and Workload in the Community College,”
outlines the ways in which community college teachers’ workloads often place
heavy limits on the amount of time they can devote to keeping current on
plagiarism scholarship as (cited by Howard and Robillard, 2009, p 4). This has
shown an inherent challenge which is global in nature with expanded education
in dealing with the vice hence there has been necessitated an innovative
approach to the issue which is the use of technology. Various software have
been developed to help tutors and learners alike to check on the vice.
There is however a different school of thought employed to curb plagiarism which is used by various
institutions around the world whereby they have taken up to educating students
on what is plagiarism and how to avoid it. An example is University of Stirling (2014) ‘THE
LITTLE BOOK OF PLAGIARISM- What it is and how to avoid it’ ,which is
essentially a handbook guide for all students to understand the vice,
detailing the various forms of
plagiarism and how to avoid them.
In conclusion, with the
advent of the internet age there has occurred a revolutionalization of how
knowledge is shared and with that plagiarism has emerged as a serious issue.
The academic world is served better by ensuring there are effective methods in
dealing with the plagiarism that has come with expanded education. Students and
researchers are under pressure to be seen performing and hence susceptible to
lifting other people’s work and failing to cite the sources properly. Thus for
the scholars the only way to prevent plagiarism is to cite sources properly and
attribute the original authors of works or ideas borrowed.
As often said
“prevention is better than cure” It’s a matter that all learning institutions
need to take up and educate their students on it s various forms as soon as
they join them and hence such awareness will reduce incidents of the vice
occurring. To further this the same technology comes into play as it can assist
various instructors and lecturers curb the vice by use of plagiarism checking
The most important
factor in all this is for society to inculcate the most important lesson of
integrity and ethical behavior as students start school in an early age.
University (n.d.). What Constitutes
(Retrieved from http://isites.harvard.edu/icb/icb.do?keyword=k70847&pageid=icb.page342054
Howard, R.M. & Robillard, A.E.
(2008).Pluralizing Plagiarism, Identities,
(Retrieved from http://www.heinemann.com/products/E01107.aspx )
of New south Wales Australia University (n.d.). common forms of plagiarism,
(Retrieved from https://student.unsw.edu.au/common-forms-plagiarism)
Of Stirling, (2014). The Little Book Of Plagiarism, What it is and how to avoid it,
(Retrieved from http://www.stir.ac.uk/media/services/registry/quality/BookofPlagiarism.pdf
Plagiarism.org (2017) What is Plagiarism?
(Retrieved from http://www.plagiarism.org/article/what-is-plagiarism)