Plagiarism in the Classroom Prevention rather than Detection

Plagiarism is an issue that every student is concerned about at one time or another. In the past, detection has always been the issue. Teachers were trying to figure out how they could detect and students were trying to plagiarize without detection. The internet drove teachers crazy. Not only could students still plagiarize but it was easier. The internet also led to another wonderful tool, plagiarism detection. With these tools there is no need for teachers to focus on detection, instead the student should focus on making their works plagiarize free.

Give the other writer credit. Quoting is perfectly acceptable when writing. Author Robert Perrin explained in his book, Pocket Guide to APA Style, “When an author’s manner or expression is unique or when his or her ideasare difficult to paraphrasequote the passage in your test.” (Perrin, 2004) See that was easy, I liked his choice of words, I kept them in my article and everyone is happy. Mr. Perrin is happy and I am happy. I was able to use his wonderful and well thought out idea and he was able to take credit for it. Several things to keep in mind when quoting, don’t make your work a bunch of quotes, for the most part people don’t like reading quotes, quotes should be short, and always give the original writer the credit.

Plagiarism detection software is available and should be used. The funny thing about plagiarism is that it is a crime that the writer is often not even aware of. If you want to avoid it and learn from your mistake, find plagiarism detection software online and use it. After performing the check, look over the areas that it thinks have been plagiarized and fix the issue. Run your papers through several different programs and compare the results. Be careful with quotes, I do not think that the software is aware of how to use a quote so it may mark it as plagiarized. So when quoting, make sure that you use the proper format.

If you want additional information on plagiarism or how to cite works get a style handbook or read about it online. I would advise keeping an APA and MLA handbook near you at all times. They have specific format information for both types of essays and can be life savers. I have found. Pocket Guide to APA Style, by Robert Perrin and MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, by Joseph Gibaldi to be my favorites. Don’t fear plagiarism, just fix it.