Plagiarism is a word that strikes fear into the heart of every college student. Plagiarism can cause students to fail papers and the whole course and can even lead to expulsion from school. And yet plagiarism is one of the most common forms of academic dishonesty and so widely seen that an entire industry has arisen to find ways to combat it. Today, student papers are routinely scanned for plagiarism using sophisticated computer software, and every instructor devotes countless hours to parsing the language of student papers for accidental or purposeful appropriation of other people’s words.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at some interesting facts about plagiarism in college in order to learn more about why students plagiarize and how we can stop academic dishonesty.
5 important facts about plagiarism in college
- Plagiarism-detection software is everywhere. Some schools advertise that they use plagiarism-detection software such as Turnitin wherever and whenever possible. Others leave it up to the discretion of instructors. However, you should never assume that your work isn’t being checked. While plagiarism-detection software has become a mainstream feature of college, even courses that don’t explicitly use it can still find your plagiarism. Instructors can even use search engines like Google to match bits of your text to online sources. Always assume someone is looking.
- The definition of plagiarism keeps changing. It might seem like plagiarism should be easy to define. The general principles are. However, the exact line where a mistake becomes plagiarism can be hard to draw. For example, a forgotten quotation mark might look like plagiarism to some people but not to others. Many argue that six copied words in a row are plagiarism, but five are not. Others feel that even mimicking the sentence structure of a source while using completely different words would make you a plagiarist.
- Plagiarism is in the eye of your instructor. Because there is no formal governing body establishing what is and isn’t plagiarism, a lot of it is up to your instructor’s discretion. Your instructor will make the decision whether copying in your paper seems like an accident or whether it was intentional. It’s always best to stay on the safe side to avoid leaving it up to your instructor.
- Students are terrified about plagiarism. According to a recent survey, as many as 90% of students worry about losing points on an assignment because of plagiarism. Nearly half (wrongly) fear that they will face legal repercussions because they plagiarized. With students in terror over the potential consequences of plagiarism, their work is inevitably going to be affected. Fear of plagiarism causes students to take fewer research risks and to be less engaged with their sources. This can make, ironically, for weaker essays and lower grades as students try so hard to avoid plagiarism that they rely too much on opinion and space-filling writing to take the place of research they are too scared to include.
- Students still plagiarize. Even with all the fear, students plagiarize at astonishing rates. An amazing 54% of students openly admit to plagiarize by copying and pasting from the internet, according to Education Week. And that only counts the students who admitted to copying. Still more won’t admit it, and another percentage plagiarizes accidentally without understanding that they had committed plagiarism. Beyond this, 14% of students admit to faking bibliography entries to make their paper look more substantial. Worse, still: Students are sharing their homework with one another. A Rutgers University survey found that 95% of students admitted to sharing homework with classmates and copying from them. With plagiarism so rampant, it’s no wonder that combating plagiarism has become an industry of its own.
So what is to be done about rampant plagiarism?
One potential solution is to buy essays from writing services online. Purchasing papers from services like WriteMyPaperHub can help you to avoid the consequences of plagiarism. When you order a custom-written essay from the experts at paper-writing services like WriteMyPaperHub, you will receive carefully written papers that are designed to help you understand the right way to work with sources from start to finish.
All of the papers are completely customized just for you and are never made from recycling past papers. In fact, WriteMyPaperHub takes its commitment to originality very seriously. They scan all of their papers carefully for plagiarism before sending them on to clients, and they have a second expert writer review each paper for plagiarism and to make sure it meets or exceeds all of the client’s requirements. Buying papers online is safe. While some cheap papers can be riddled with plagiarism, especially those produced in foreign countries by writers who speak English as a second or third language, purchasing an affordable paper from a dedicated and well-regarded service like WriteMyPaperHub can spare you the pain of plagiarism.