What is plagiarism?

What is plagiarism?

Plagiarism is the use of another’s ideas and words and passing them off as one’s own without giving proper credit to the original source of the said ideas and words. Plagiarism can be in several forms such as direct copying, word switching, concealing of sources, working with students without being directed to do so by the course instructor, and re-use of one’s previous work.

Direct copying is a form of plagiarism where one takes the exact words used by another either form  a book, website, fellow student, or other source and putting these words into one’s own without indicating that one has done so.

Word-switching iswhere one takes another’s written work and switches a few words randomly using parts of sentences without citing the original author

Concealing sources is where one does not clearly indicate the source of the information.It includes taking the ideas of another and not stating the source of the ideas; taking another’s ideas and putting the ideas in one’s own words without indicating the source of the ideas;and utilization of   a source multiple times but only citing it once.

Working together with one’s fellow students amounts to plagiarism if the course instructor hasnot given the permission to do so. This type of plagiarism includes copying the work of another student; submitting another’s work whether in part or in whole and posing it as one’s own work; sharing of work with another, paying a second party to complete one’ work; writing an individual assignment as a group assignment; requesting for translation of ideas into English by another student.

Re-using work that one has done in the past and failing to indicate that one has done so is a form of plagiarism. It is poor practice to re-submit part or entire work done in the pastas this is an attempt to get double set off marks for the same piece of work. It is impossible for an academic institution to give the exact same assignment twice for it to warrant a double submission. Everyassignmentrequires that one develops a fresh set of arguments and ideas. The only time that it is acceptable to use previous work is when one is using results from a previous assignment to complete a current one and proceeding to reference the said work appropriately; when re-interpreting any sources that one may have used in the previous work; or building on the previous work’s ideas. At other times, a student may be requested by the instructor to utilize a previous work for different academic purposes such as when the assignment involves writing an essay plan and another requires that one writes a full essay; or where one assignment requires the writing of a literature review and another requires writing a dissertation that uses the literature review fromthe previous assignment.

Plagiarism has a number of consequences such as destroying the reputation of a student. The academic record of a student that has submitted plagiarized work can reflect an offense of ethics which may result in the barring of the student from enrolling into high school or college. Once the student is scarred by allegations of plagiarism, their academic career can come to a halt. Academic careers have publishing as one of the factors that create their prestige and hence losing publishing rights can terminate one’s academic position as well as destroy their reputation.