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You are required to write a report on the following topic.

Topic: ‘Plagiarism and its consequences in tertiary education, and how Plagiarism can be minimised’.

You should read the appropriate topics on Interact2 and chapters of your textbook to get information on writing reports

Types of Plagiarism

Plagiarism is a very serious academic crime that can lead to undesirable outcomes. Plagiarism is the act of using another person’s ideas or work without their consent or without acknowledging their contribution(s). Thus, plagiarism encompasses both published and unpublished materials whether in the form of electronic, manuscript or printed. Essentially, plagiarism can be unintentional or intentional. Nonetheless, any act of plagiarism, whether intentional or unintentional, is punishable. There are various ways in which one can plagiarize. Similarly, there are also some ways in which one can avoid plagiarism. The primary focus of this paper, therefore, is to discuss plagiarism and its consequences in tertiary education. The paper also addresses ways in which plagiarism can be minimized.  

There exist various types of plagiarism (Ehrich, Howard, Mu & Bokosmaty, 2016). The first and common type of plagiarism is known as direct plagiarism. This form of plagiarism entails word-for-word transfer from the primary source. The copied work includes neither some direct quotations nor citation (Pecorari & Petri?, 2014). Another form of plagiarism is self-plagiarism. Self-plagiarism occurs when a student submits his/her previous work or some sections of the work earlier done without consent from the instructors involved in the teaching or marking of the work (Pecorari & Petri?, 2014). It also includes submission of work used in a different class to the current one. Mosaic plagiarism is also a common form of plagiarism. It involves using of phrases from another source without including quotation marks. Additionally, mosaic plagiarism is also caused by using another author’s work format, original structure, and the exact meaning. Some students also tend to commit accidental plagiarism (Ehrich, Howard, Mu & Bokosmaty, 2016). It usually occurs when a writer fails to provide citations, reference list, misquotes or incorrect paraphrase. Incorrect paraphrase occurs when a writer uses similar words or group of words as used in the original source and does not provide acknowledgment of the author.

The academic requirements are that students submit original work free of plagiarism. However, despite the simplicity of understanding such a requirement, students still find themselves submitting work with some plagiarized sections (Eret & Ok, 2014). For this reason, it is important to highlight some of the factors that underlie plagiarism. According to Cheema et al. (2015), some students plagiarize due to lack of awareness about plagiarism. For the beginners in the tertiary education, plagiarism is totally a new phenomenon thus the majority of the beginners tend to plagiarize. A second factor that leads to plagiarism is the students' failure to understand the conventions of academic writing in tertiary education (Greenberger et al. 2016).

Why Do Students Plagiarize?

Thirdly, a student’s recklessness also results to plagiarism. In this case, the student may be aware of plagiarism but does not adhere to the standard writing because of failure to meet the deadline for submission (Eret & Ok, 2014). The fourth factor has to do with the student's personality. For instance, a student may decide to copy other people's works or ideas for fear of being labeled a loser. In this case, a student, in pursuit of success is predisposed to committing plagiarism (Eret & Ok, 2014). Other factors include the ease of copying and pasting information from the electronic sources. Finally, the student may be unaware of how to avoid plagiarism. All in all, plagiarism is deemed evident where a student's work presents explicit and extensive copying of the word order, ideas and organization of a certain original material without acknowledging the author’s contribution (Eret & Ok, 2014: Fisher & Partin, 2014). 

Every student should avoid plagiarism all costs. Several methods have been proposed and that which play a significant role in avoiding plagiarism (Chowdhry, 2016). One of the methods is learning how to take notes. Note taking is an effective learning strategy that helps a student in keeping a record for future reference (Chowdhry, 2016). Nevertheless, note-taking can lead to plagiarism especially where a student copies word by word. In this sense, therefore, a student should learn how to make notes. It is recommended that a student first reads the text, comprehend the content and then summarize in own words. That way, the student rules out plagiarism in his/her work. This method of note taking ensures that there is less copying of word to word. Essentially, the practice is also an effective strategy for testing a student’s comprehension of the subject matter.

Secondly, one can avoid plagiarism through the use of direct quotes (Chowdhry, 2016). It is important to note that any direct quote used in any work should be written in quotation marks and provide the citation for the quoted section. Additionally, the reference for the quoted text should appear in the list of references. Although the use of direct quotes helps in avoiding plagiarism, the inclusion of direct quotes varies depending on the task and the discipline (Fisher & Partin, 2014). For instance, English assignment may require direct quotes to support a given argument. Conversely, the use of direct quotes in natural sciences may not always apply, so argues Fisher and Partn (2014). In both, however, the length and frequency of quotes should be less. Secondary quotations are also discouraged. For instance, a student is discouraged from using a quotation without studying its primary source. Studying the quotation from its original source helps the student to relate the quote with the assignment at hand. Notably, misquoting and failure to provide citation reduces the writer’s credibility of the text used.  

How to Avoid Plagiarism

Thirdly, it is important to provide a citation for any piece of writing (Fisher & Partin, 2014). In other words, the student should acknowledge any information whether derived from texts, journals, articles, TV programs, web sources, radio programs, magazines or newspaper. Additionally, the sources used in the citation must also be provided in the reference list. The manner in which one cites his/her should also comply with the requirements of the assignment because there are different ways of providing a citation. Students should also be aware of what can be cited and what cannot (Pecorari & Petri?, 2014). For instance, it is not necessary to cite information on personal experience. Also, common sayings may not be cited although they should be used sparingly. In fact, some of the common sayings could be quotations by authors.

Fourthly, students can avoid plagiarism through paraphrasing their works. However, when plagiarism is not done effectively can result to plagiarism (Mohan, et al. 2015). Paraphrasing entails the use of one's own words instead of using the exact words used by the author. Thus, in paraphrase, a student is required to read, understand and give the information in different words. Paraphrasing, however, requires one to provide the relevant citation. Originally, in paraphrase, the author’s idea remains only that it has been rewritten in different words hence the provision of citation is paramount.

Plagiarism is a gross academic misconduct that has dire consequences (Honsy & Fatima, 2014). While universities expect substantial integrity from its staff members and the students, there is little or no leniency in the case of plagiarism. Therefore, both intentional and unintentional plagiarism acts are treated with equal measure (Singh, Ram & Satsangi, 2015). Even though, different universities have varying measures taken against the offense of plagiarism there are some common consequences of plagiarism. These include; academic probation, issuance of academic warnings, dismissal from a learning institution and reprimand, rejection or destruction of the work (Singh, Ram & Satsangi, 2015). In addition, plagiarism can lead to a legal action being taken against the offender.

The repercussions for plagiarism put a student's academic career at stake.  That is, when one is accused of plagiarism, he/she may be expelled from the university. The consequence is that the student's reputation is destroyed. Thus he/she may never be accepted in any other learning institution (Hosny & Fatima, 2014). Primarily, Honsy and Fatima (2014) note that there is no institution of higher learning that allows plagiarism. For that reason, the student will not only loose an opportunity to pursue a given course but also loses the chances of employment.

Consequences of Plagiarism

Conclusion

It is evident that plagiarism, both intentional and unintentional is an unacceptable practice whether in the field of academic or non-academic. There are numerous reasons why students plagiarize. Although plagiarism may occur as a result of ignorance, there is no excuse for such misconduct. Additionally, students can avoid plagiarism through such ways as effective paraphrasing, citing, referencing and use of direct quotation. The consequences for plagiarism can be ethical, legal, personal and professional.

It is necessary for a student to plan his/her work before settling to write (Fish & Hura, 2013). Proper planning helps one avoid plagiarism. The following factors are essential while planning to write an academic paper. The student should first consult with the instructor (Fish & Hura, 2013). In this case, the student may ask questions about plagiarism, how to make citations and seek clarity for the question or how the paper should appear. The second step is planning the paper. That is, the student should plan how to incorporate information from other sources if they are to be used in the paper. In other words, one has to know how to integrate personal information and the original ideas without plagiarizing (Fish & Hura, 2013). Thirdly, the student should take effective notes before writing down an assignment. It should be remembered that poor note taking may result in errors such as misquoting, improper referencing and citation. Finally, it is vital to analyze and evaluate the texts for use. It is not all the sources especially the ones found on the web are accurate and credible (Fish & Hura, 2013). Thus, a writer must pay attention to the author of a given material, the relevance of the content, accuracy as well as the credibility of any citation material.

References

Bakhtiyari, K., Salehi, H., Embi, M. A., Shakiba, M., Zavvari, A., Shahbazi-Moghadam, M.,& Mohammadjafari, M. (2014). Ethical and unethical methods of plagiarism prevention in academic writing.

Cheema, W. A., Najib, F., Ahmed, S., Bukhari, S. H., Sittar, A., & Nawab, R. M. A. (2015). A Corpus for Analyzing Text Reuse by People of Different Groups. In CLEF (Working Notes).

Chowdhry, A. (2016). Ways to avoid and dodge plagiarism in scientific writing? Personal experience. Accountability in research, 23(3), 195-197.

Ehrich, J., Howard, S. J., Mu, C., & Bokosmaty, S. (2016). A comparison of Chinese and Australian university students' attitudes towards plagiarism.Studies in Higher Education, 41(2), 231-246.

Eret, E., & Ok, A. (2014). Internet plagiarism in higher education: tendencies, triggering factors and reasons among teacher candidates.Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 39(8), 1002-1016.

Fish, R. M., & Hura, G. M. (2013). Student's perceptions of plagiarism. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 13(5), 33-45.

Fisher, E. R., & Partin, K. M. (2014). The challenges for scientists in avoiding plagiarism. Accountability in research, 21(6), 353-365.

Greenberger, S., Holbeck, R., Steele, J., & Dyer, T. (2016). Plagiarism Due to Misunderstanding: Online Instructor Perceptions. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 16(6), 72-84.

Hosny, M., & Fatima, S. (2014). Attitude of students towards cheating and plagiarism: University case study. Journal of Applied Sciences, 14(8), 748.

Mohan, M., Shetty, D., Shetty, T., & Pandya, K. (2015). Rising from Plagiarising. Journal of maxillofacial and oral surgery, 14(3), 538-540.

Pecorari, D., & Petri?, B. (2014). Plagiarism in second-language writing. Language Teaching, 47(03), 269-302.

Singh, B. P., Ram, M., & Satsangi, A. K. (2015). Plagiarism Detection Service: Its Benefits and Challenges for Academicians and Researchers.Transforming Dimension of IPR: Challenges for New Age Libraries, 227.

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