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Deterring and detecting plagiarism workshop. Judy Cohen, UELT. Defining plagiarism. University definition: Plagiarism: reproducing in any work submitted for assessment or review any material derived from work authored by another without clearly acknowledging the source. Academic Discipline.

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Defining plagiarism
Defining plagiarism

University definition:

Plagiarism: reproducing in any work submitted for assessment or review

  • any material derived from work authored by another without clearly acknowledging the source

Academic discipline
Academic Discipline

‘Students are required to act with honesty and integrity’ regarding academic progress

  • Duplication of material (auto plagiarism)

  • Cheating in examinations

  • Attempting to influence an examiner or teacher improperly

  • Conspiring with others to reproduce the work of others without proper acknowledgement (copying/sharing)

  • Falsification of data/evidence

Defining plagiarism annex 10
Defining plagiarism: Annex 10

‘The identification of plagiarism is an academic judgement, based on a comparison across the student's work in general, and/or on knowledge of the sources, of practice in the discipline and of expectations for professional conduct.’

Plagiarism may be established even if source not identified

Defining plagiarism annex 101
Defining plagiarism: Annex 10

  • ‘Strict liability’: intention not relevant when establishing a case of plagiarism

  • Poor academic practice considered in penalties

  • Onus on student to use the material supplied by the University

    • Lack of understanding is not a defence

Major or minor
Major or minor?

  • First offence: may issue formal warning only to Stage 1 u/g

  • First offence: warning and minor penalty

    • Poor practice

    • No intent to deceive

Major or minor1
Major or minor?

  • Existing formal warning

  • Number of offences- previous or contemporaneous

  • Contribution of assignment to module mark

  • Proportion of plagiarised work within the assignment

  • Evidence of intent to deceive

Taken from Jude Carroll workshop 16/1/2013 University of Kent ‘Plagiarism Forum’


intention to deceive

Student knows,

makes a mistake


Student does not

know the rules;

student breaks the rules



Assessment design
Assessment design Kent ‘Plagiarism Forum’

  • Consider why students might plagiarise

    • Last minute rush

    • Can’t keep up

    • Who cares anyway?

    • Pressure to succeed

    • I can’t do it on my own!

    • I only need to pass (not learn)

    • ??

    • See JISC report ‘Plagiarism detection and prevention’

Strategies to deter plagiarism
Strategies to deter plagiarism Kent ‘Plagiarism Forum’

  • Making an answer

    • not finding an answer

  • Focus on process (rather than product):

    • valuing it; making it visible

  • Authentication Checking

    • ‘Who did this work?’

      Strategy Game from Jude Carroll’s Plagiarism Forum 16 Jan 2013

Deterring plagiarism
Deterring plagiarism Kent ‘Plagiarism Forum’

  • Include opportunities for practice

  • Analytical or comparative writing tasks

  • Specific and current topics

  • Include information gathering skills (process)

  • Use essay banks as a teaching tool

  • Assess process in groupwork

  • Reflective writing

Deterring plagiarism1
Deterring plagiarism Kent ‘Plagiarism Forum’

  • Assess reading/noting skills

  • Open book exams

  • Vivas/orals

  • Individualised assignments

  • Engaging assessment tasks (eg Wiki exercise)

  • Peer assessment/audience

  • Include artefacts/drafts/plans

  • Time planning…