Table of contents:



  1. Plagiarism as an academic dishonesty
  2. Plagiarism and its peculiarities
  3. Plagiarism. The World Wide Web
  4. Plagiarism in universities and honest “cheating”
  5. Conclusion


1. Plagiarism as an academic dishonesty

Academic dishonesty is a wide term used to define the process of the student performing a set of academic misconduct. Plagiarism is one of the most widespread academic dishonesties among the students. Plagiarism is one of the known types of academic dishonesty. It often happens due to the fact that the student wants to get a higher mark for the paper and be successful in class but it is not the only reason the student performs it as an academic tool.

Sometimes plagiarism happens in the situation when the individual is not sufficiently informed about the standards of writing this or that paper.

Worldwide plagiarism is accepted as a deliberate appropriation of the results of other individual’s work, scientific discoveries, ideas, inventions, art creations and other. Plagiarism is mostly used in the sphere of intellectual property. It breaks the laws of authorship and may be a matter of the application of corresponding sanctions. This implies that the individual conducting plagiarism is not only socially, but also legally responsible for such a misappropriation. As for academic plagiarism, it is necessary to mention that it may often be observed in the form of hiding the source in the paper, not mentioning the exact page on which the information can be found or simply conducting a “copy paste” act (Clement, 2001, p.260).

  1. 2.    Plagiarism and its peculiarities

In terms of academic dishonesty, plagiarism is a vital problem as it deals with the student’s attempts to given somebody’s ideas as his own conclusions.  Very often, plagiarism is easily noticed in the changing style of the paper: jumping from the language of fiction to the language of science. Though many plagiarism detection systems have been invented its rate is still very high. The rise of the amount of such violations is registered around twelve years ago (Iyer and Eastman, 2006, p.103). This indicates that there is more to the problem than just the student’s intention to cheat in the paper and get a higher score.  Students obviously are facing some sort of difficulties that eventually result in the “addiction” of plagiarism.

In spite of many opinions plagiarism did not start with the spread of the Internet access. Even in the blossom of the paper-book era, plagiarism occurred widely. According to Alschuler and Blimling (2005), plagiarism as an academic dishonesty may be referred to as a “the academic equivalent of urban crime”(p.123). Many years ago student turned to the help of books and the appropriation of ideas occurred in the same manner it does now. The issue is that the pre-Internet era also produced a great amount of “custom made” papers. Internet simply developed this idea, but nevertheless the concept remains the same: somebody makes the paper for the individual and finally the individual gives it as his own product and gets a good grade. Therefore, plagiarism keeps happening and lives no place of the objectivity within the academic process in case if it is not detected.

3. Plagiarism. The World Wide Web

When the first “www” pages appeared the world faced a new plagiarism-boom as since that moment plagiarism lost national borders and became an international academic dishonesty. Internet became the facilitator of all the plagiarism intentions and provided numerous resources to steal ideas from. So, in other words it become easier to find various resources required making more and more plagiarized works that are hard to detect.  Ever since that moment the overwhelming majority of school reports are “copy-paste” made. In the beginning it was rather easy as there were not any detecting software. Another Internet innovation made its contribution into making plagiarism a global issue ”“ custom essay writing services. And it obviously is a real temptation for a student that is very busy studying and working instead of doing the paper himself ”“ to pay another person to do it for him (Embleton, 2007, p.23).

The hard work of the students that write the paper themselves is absolutely precious, but brings up moral issues.

This is primarily due to the fact, that one student can work hard and write a paper on his own, but nevertheless get a C or a B and another student orders the paper and gets an A for it. One student ”“ has spend a lot of time working, and doing his best, the other did nothing but pay for the paper. This makes a lot of students feel very frustrated, as they perceive this situation as a sign that their effort is not important anymore. As a consequence objectivity suffers and it might be said that even the educational level suffers from such plagiarist “tricks”.

From this position we see, the one other reason for plagiarizing may be the feeling of frustration and the notion that many students plagiarize and get a good grade. Each and every person appreciated his own work and efforts and sometimes it is not the desire to cheat but the understanding that his fair work will not be appreciated at its true value. Nevertheless such situations are rare as need to be referred to as a consequence and not the premise of plagiarism. The internet era converted plagiarism into a business, and the academic success into a “commodity” one can buy. Therefore, the antiplagiarism software is the most appropriate answer to the present situation.

Turnitin, is accepted among the antiplagiarism resource systems (Embleton and Helfer, 2007, p.23). Such systems should become the first and last attempts of any student to use paper with plagiarism, because some students want to try if they can get an “easy score” and if they fail ”“ return to a normal type of writing papers. Nevertheless, it is vital to point out that it is still extremely difficult for an antiplagiarism software system to detect a customized paper (Born, 2003, p. 223). The paper may not be plagiarized it self, but at the moment a student buy it and name it to be his own work ”“ it becomes plagiarism. This issue is one of the major problems of the contemporary plagiarism.

On one hand, Internet may become a perfect guide on how to write a non-plagiarized paper due to the fact that is contains a lot of resources on this topic and teaches how to make citation in any existing citation style. On the other hand, Internet usage results in the increased amount of plagiarism cases. So the students are not driven only by the desire to cheat. Sometimes the student is not aiming to cheat, but gets interested in this or that position provided by a given author. He takes the author’s opinion as the reflection of his own and actually makes a plagiarized paper only because he does not really know how to make a proper citation.

  1. Plagiarism in universities and honest “cheating”

Plagiarism is observed not only at schools, but also in colleges and universities which makes the problem of plagiarism a vital one in terms of qualitative education and objective grading. Colleges or universities are places were the approach to the researches quite changes as compare to high school. Many students want to produce an excellent research paper without plagiarizing it, but they fail simply due to the lack of knowledge how to do it “technically”. If a paper is reported to be a plagiarism it does not always mean that the student wanted to cheat but often is the result of the inability to use the ideas of other person with the following corresponding citation of the resource the idea was borrowed from (Born, 2003, p.224). Such violation of the citation laws puts an “honest” paper in the same category with the paper that is based on somebody else’s concept or idea.  In other words, no matter what type of source it used it should be credited.

Each university has it own code of ethics in accordance to which each student is to follow a set of rules of how an appropriate paper needs to be written. Nevertheless, some students still fail to make a non-plagiarized paper even without having an intention to cheat and do one. Bricault (2007, provides an outstanding example of a professors reaction to plagiarism: “This is superior work. It was excellent when Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote it, just as it is today. Saint Thomas gets an A. You get an F” (p.15).

  1. Conclusion

The phenomenon of plagiarism nowadays is one of the most important problems in each and every academic society and has to deal with issues of morality difficulties (Caruana, 2000, p. 23). Nevertheless very often initially the student does not have the aim to cheat, nevertheless all the resources used for the paper need to be credited.

Therefore, plagiarism is a manifestation of academic dishonesty but the premises are to be studied as not each and every plagiarism occurs only because the student has an intention to cheat, but because plagiarism is propagandized and the citation norms are neglected.

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