The general rules are clear: “if it’s not yours, you cite it” and “if you’re not sure whether or not to cite it, cite it.”
Most, but not all, documentation style guides include the rule, “if you cite it in the text, then you must reference it (usually at the end of the article, paper, chapter, book), and if you have a reference (at the end), then you need a citation in the text.” Put simply:
citation <> reference <> citation
There are exceptions to every rule, and documentation is no exception Continue reading
Following last year’s publication of Turnitin Effectiveness: Plagiarism Prevention in U.S. High Schools, Turnitin has recently published a follow-up research study, Turnitin Effectiveness in U.S. Colleges and Universities.
Similar to the earlier study, the college and university study purports to demonstrate that, although schools and colleges which qualified for the study often experience an increase in the rate of “unoriginal content” in the first year of Turnitin use, most schools and colleges experience a decrease in the rate of unoriginal content in the second year of use, and, on average, all schools experience decreases in the third and subsequent years.
Unlike the earlier study, Turnitin does not use unfounded assumptions of increase in rates of use of unoriginal content in schools which do not use Turnitin in an attempt to demonstrate how effective use of Turnitin can be (see Imagine… (another flawed study)).
However, just as in the earlier study, Turnitin only considers papers Continue reading
Last week, a friend asked if I had come across a source evaluation tool which interacted with Turnitin’s text-matching software. Attached to the email was a copy of Turnitin’s Source Educational Evaluation Rubric (SEER).
That was news to me! Interactive with Turnitin? Trying to work out why my friend thought SEER was interactive, and with Turnitin, took me down some strange paths. And the search got me taking a second look at SEER, a second look and a closer look. A strange journey.
I had in fact been alerted to the release of the rubric back in January 2013, Continue reading
As if hot on the heels of my last post, Adam Dachis has posted the advice Use a Plagiarism Checker to Get References for a Research Paper on LifeHacker.
He lists a number of free “plagiarism-checkers,” including Plagiarisma (critiqued in Authentic Authenticity).
Dachis is aware that few “plagiarism-checkers” discover all “borrowed” material, so he advises
Your mileage may vary with the different tools, so you probably should run your paper through a few of them to get all your sources. Continue reading
The case of Carrie Pfeiffer-Fiala raises some interesting questions, and may even supply, if not answers, at least some insight into “accidental” plagiarism.
As reported in Scene & Heard, in an article by Doug Brown which was headlined Ex-Kent State Ph.D-Candidate’s Lawsuit: No Such Thing as ‘Plagiarism’ in First Drafts, Pfeiffer-Fiala had submitted a first draft of the first chapter of her PhD dissertation to her professor. Her professor found unattributed passages and claimed she had plagiarised parts of her dissertation. Pfeiffer-Fiala argued that this was but a draft. Brown quotes her as arguing “that she knew that citations were incomplete in the draft … and that any citation omissions were inadvertent would be addressed in the editing process and subsequent iterations towards a final submission… .” The case is going to law. Continue reading