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2011 Plagiarism: who are guilty, students or teachers?

Plagiarism: who are guilty students or teachers?Research Paper

Plagiarism is

considered as the appropriation of someone else’s ideas as if those were done by us. The analysis of the responsibility that students and teachers have in this topic will be discussed through the essay.Laura

Nathalia

SolerDecember, 2011

Contreras


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 2

Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? Research Paper

Laura Nathalia Contreras Soler

Magister Alexis Guevara Henao

University of Quindio

School of Education

Modern Languages

December, 2011.


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 3

Abstract. Plagiarism is considered as the stealing of the ideas of someone else without giving any credit to the original author and passing those as ours. Through this research it is going to be discussed why students and professors are culpable of plagiarism. Indeed, there are going to be given some essential points to clarify the importance of the topic and some solutions that could be implemented so as to finish with this crime.

Key Words: Plagiarism, plagiarize, crime, inadequate, theft, consciously, unconsciously, professor, student, teacher, appropriation, misinformation, carelessness, solution, change, unacceptable, overcome, understand.


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 4 Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers?

The most important tool human beings have for uttering ideas is communication; each person is unique, capable of thinking and expressing different thoughts and completely prepared to create new concepts and dialogs. As a result, autonomy and originality appears but at the same time imitation takes place. One of the most used ways of appropriating of someone else´s ideas is plagiarizing. In fact, this concept emerged approximately in the 16th century and was widely tolerated by people. But, times changed and the concept that people had turned different. According to Plagiarism dot org (2011), in its article What Is Plagiarism? it is said that plagiarism is “to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one`s own… without crediting the source” (p.1) Not only it is judged as a fraud, but also it is considered as an offense to the original author. Talking about plagiarism at schools and universities, both, students and teachers are equally guilty of it. According to History News Network (2011), in its article What is Plagiarism? The term plagiarism came from the “Latin extractions plagiare”, to steal, and “plagiaries”, kidnapper (p.1). In addition, Lynch (2011), in the article the Perfectly Acceptable Practice of Literary Theft: Plagiarism, Copyright, and the Eighteenth Century points out that the word was born in the 16 th century when people from that epoch wanted to be artists easily and avoided unique work. Movements like modernism increased the problem; indeed, people thought that their works had to be as similar as possible to those of their colleagues if they wanted them to endure; thus, to plagiarize was widely practiced during that epoch and most of people tolerated it and did not consider it wrong. (p.4)


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 5 People were ambitious and did not care about their fellows. But, the acceptation of that practice among people gradually diminished because original authors started to defend their work. Famous citizens whose work was so important started using security through copyright acts; to illustrate, the first copyright that was published to protect books and others ideas was the “Copyright Act of 1790” (1970), which helped many authors with their trouble. However, that tool was not an ultimate solution due to the fact that plagiarism could be done in different ways and sometimes it was not necessary stealing the complete book or copying to create the offense. Nowadays, to plagiarize literary means stealing. Definitely, this violation is as huge as a crime and it can be punished in several ways. Generally speaking, plagiarism at schools and at universities is seen as a dishonest act and can cause a person the expulsion from the institution, disciplinary consequences, and the termination of the contract in working cases. Some of the most common ways of plagiarizing are characterized by recycling ideas and changing some words so as to create a document without giving any credit to the author. For instance, according to Laws.com copyright (2005), in the article Types Of Plagiarism, there exists five kinds of plagiarizing “Word Switch plagiarism”, which is changing some words and avoiding quotations in order to show that this is your original work; other type is “Metaphor Plagiarism”, that is characterized by using metaphors without citing the author; “reasoning style plagiarism” is made when people use just an article for creating ideas in the same order that it although it does not have the same words. Another is “Idea plagiarism” and it happens when people do not distinguish common knowledge like the form of the earth from new researches done by scientists that have to receive the credit for their ideas. Finally, “Copy and paste plagiarism”, is done using other ideas without references of the source. (p.1)


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 6 Although plagiarism is widely known around many different topics, in this research it is going to be discussed only at schools and universities. In this context, it is clear that students and teachers are guilty in the same way of plagiarizing. Furthermore, it is necessary to clarify that not all the students or all the teachers plagiarize; this work is referring to those who commit the fault. First, it is sure that plagiarism occurs because professors do not inform their students about this topic. To exemplify, according to Why Students Plagiarize (2011), in the article Plagiarism among Students, it is shown that “The first thing that promotes the plagiarism among students are the teacher themselves, who do not make them aware about this issue, the types and even the results of plagiarism” (p.2). Consequently, students get confused and plagiarism easily appears. So, the million-dollar question is how can students understand this term if professors do not fulfill their obligation of instructing them? In the "Education Act of 1982” (2006), “Teacher's Obligations” it is stipulated that a professor must “Participate as an agent of constructive social, economic, moral, intellectual, cultural and political change in his school and the community within the context of national policies” (P.1. Sec. 16) But, what happens when they do not complete that role? Surely, the answer would be that the professors are already part of the problem and the permanence of plagiarism at schools and universities is so related with their acts. Then, due to the fact that students are uninformed they are plagiarizing. Indeed, it is very common to see around institutes many students that do not understand what plagiarism is, and the result is that they commit the fault unconsciously. According to The Guide To Plagiarism And Cyber-Plagiarism (2011) in the article Why Students Plagiarize, the confusion that students have about the concept usually leads them to misquote the sources; in addition, in this article it is said that “up to 60% of students cannot distinguish between paraphrased and plagiarized text” (p.3)


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 7 Moreover, not citing sources joins with the misunderstanding that exists between common knowledge and plagiarism. To illustrate, there is a particular case of a student of the University of Maryland, in the article Plagiarism Lines Blur for Students in Digital Age (2010), written by Gabriel; the student was castigated because she copied some phrases from Wikipedia, but her defense was that common knowledge do not need to be cited even less if that appeared on a collaborative web page (p.1). Although she learned the lesson through experience, other people are falling in the mistake in this time without knowing about it. Second, it is completely guaranteed that professors are guilty of plagiarizing on papers due to carelessness. To be more explicit, professors who write documents like essays, researches, books, and so on, are plagiarizing when they forget to quote a source. To exemplify, Harvard scholars (2002), in the article Harvard Plagiarism Archive, talks about Ogletree, a Harvard Law professor that assured he forgot to quote some phrases of other authors into his book; indeed, he stated “'I delegated too much responsibility to others‌I was negligent in not overseeing more carefully the final product that carries my nameâ€? (p.1) furthermore, in the article Ogletree Faces Discipline for Copying Text (2004), written by Marks, he also notified that this mistake was produced also by his two assistants that had forgotten to quote six paragraphs of other novelists. (p.1) it is obvious that those mistakes are the result of the carelessness that he had at time of performing his work and to say that his helpers were the culpable, is an excuse. Continuing with the topic, carelessness among students has made that they plagiarize too. When they do not follow the process of quoting sources as they are writing the result could be that proper work mixes up with others. According to reasons for plagiarizing (2011), in the article guide to plagiarism and cyber -plagiarism, it is stated that students are plagiarizing because they are not saving references when they are writing, besides, they are not quoting the


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 8 sources and finally when they want to organize the text it is not recognized the proper work from the other due to the disorder. (p.1) definitely, if people follow an instruction at time of producing a work, the result would be satisfactory and without plagiarism. To explain, Capital Community College (2011), in the document Writer's Practical Guide to MLA Documentation, explains that writing a document must has an order so as to guarantee the success of it; in fact, it is displayed how to organize the references, to cite sources, and to put food notes and endnotes when necessary. (p.1) to forget quoting is not an excuse, it is fundamental to be careful at time of working on papers in order to exterminate definitely plagiarism. As a third point of the research, some authors express a different point of view about plagiarism. Like Ruskalian (2009), who in the article You Didn’t Plagiarize, Your Unconscious Did clearly shows that for him using other ideas is common and sometimes done unconsciously. To illustrate the point, some of his interviewed colleagues said “Clearly all of us, referring to journalists, probably appropriate phrases or ideas, on occasion, without realizing it 1” (p.1) … “I really think that at a very simple level, these things are happening all the time. You know, your friend uses some expression and you pick it up and use it too” 2 (p.2) surely, this is unacceptable. Considering that plagiarism is to steal other work regardless of it is done conscious or unconsciously, any excuse supports plagiarism. To reinforce, Davidoff (2010), the author of the document Unoriginal Sins, Defining plagiarism in the digital age, has shown the answer of Mehegan, one of his helpers in the development of the work; in fact he said “There are those who say that unconscious plagiarism is possible, but it seems to me that if it’s possible, then it’s a kind of a mental illness. If you don’t know the difference between what someone else said and what you said, then there’s a problem with identifying yourself.” (p.1) hence, it is deduced that 1

Roediger, one of the interviewed for the article expressed this thought.

2

Howard Schneider, dean of the School of Journalism at New York's Stony Brook University.


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 9 plagiarism stays among us as the result of attitudes and ambiguous thoughts like the mentioned before which only diminishes the seriousness of plagiarism. Summarizing ideas, one interesting web page that supports many topics already discussed through the essay is PlagiarismdotOrg (2011). Indeed, in its article What is plagiarism explains why people are plagiarizing; some reasons given were that they think it is adequate, they are not going to be caught, they just did it because it is usual among population; furthermore, many other were excuses for committing plagiarism. The most used were misinformation, lack of education, cultural thought (it is said that some communities consider knowledge as universal and it does not belong to anybody) 3 (p.1) although people think those are acceptable reasons for plagiarizing, the sole reality is that plagiarism is a crime that must be avoided; if not, it must be punished. As the article stipulated, “It doesn't matter if you intend to plagiarize or not! In the eyes of the law, and most publishers and academic institutions, any form of plagiarism is an offense that demands punitive action. Ignorance is never an excuse.” (p.1) Another important discovery done through this investigation and supported by the pages already quoted is that students are plagiarizing because they do not have moral; but the worrying thing is teachers are responsible. A survey done by Education Week (2011), in the article Facts about Plagiarism, demonstrates that“74% of students admitted that at least once during the past school year they had engaged in "serious" cheating; and 47% of students believe their teachers sometimes choose to ignore students who are cheating”. (p.1) unquestionably, students do it because they know it is not consider a huge fault by adults; but, more astonishing is teachers do not take the necessary measures to rectify the mistake. On the contrary, they prefer to be outside from the situation; like Obispo, a professor, that in the web page plagiarism dot ORG (2011) 3

Taken from international students and plagiarism (2005): an analysis of the reasons for plagiarism among international foundation students (p.4)


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 10 pointed out “With respect to cheating, I'm just in denial. I just don't want to deal with it because I know it is a huge problem” (p.1) additionally, investigations done by Renzoulli (2010), of Swarthmore College, in the article Study: Most student plagiarizers don’t understand rules corroborates that "College instructors often view policing plagiarism and teaching students about it as outside their responsibilities"(p.2) normally, that kind of attitude is not hoped under any circumstance; but the cruel reality is that professors are part of the problem and they realized it long time ago. Finally, it is necessary to say that students and teachers are guilty of plagiarism because they do it consciously most of the time. According to PlagiarismdotOrg (2011), in the article did you Know? “80% of "high-achieving" high school students admit to cheating and did not believe cheating was wrong” (p.1). They consider plagiarism is so common and everybody does it. In addition, professors are plagiarizing formal documents intentionally. An example is a professor at Columbia University (2008), who in the article Columbia Cites Plagiarism by a Professor, written by Arenson, was accused of plagiarizing a document consciously (p.1). Seriously, this behavior among students and teachers must disappear in order to improve adequate customs and put off plagiarism; moreover, community must be involved in this change so as to avoid and interrupt definitely plagiarism outside the classrooms. To sum up, plagiarism is a term known around different lands, but talking about schools and universities the responsibility of it rests on students and teachers. First, because they are uninformed about the topic and as a result they plagiarize. Second, they do not take care at time of presenting written works and quotations and references are not included. Third, committing plagiarism conscious or unconsciously is inappropriate and the consequences must be received. Therefore, any given reason is an excuse for accepting and practicing plagiarism due to the fact


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 11 that creativity among people is fundamental and someone else`s ideas must be respected. To finish, students and teachers have the obligation of consider this topic as important as it is, and they have to implement conducts that could help to destroy this ambiguous method of stealing because contemporary generations deserve the right of creating ideas by themselves.

CONCLUSIONS:


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 12 

Plagiarism will endure if teachers and students do not avoid stealing others thoughts. The solution surely must be to stimulate people through creative activities like telling original stories without searching information, just using mind for allowing people come up with new ideas; it is necessary to change the way of perceiving the world and recognize the labor of others in order to encourage new ideas.

Performing a written work is a meticulous labor; so, it must be done through preparation, order, and specific objectives. If it is developed in this way, certainly problems with quotations or references will disappear.

Excuses that people give when they commit plagiarism are unnecessary. That is because human beings are capable of creating unique ideas without stealing someone else. Moreover, organization and concentration are abilities all people can develop before doing an activity; and plagiarism will be in ruins if people start thinking in a unique way and forgetting inappropriate behaviors.

Plagiarism will be evaporated if community, teachers and students avoid using it. Furthermore, if they denounce cases of plagiarism and explain to other people the importance of being originals surely creativity will endure before than plagiarism.

References:


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 13 History News. (2011) what is Plagiarism? Retrieved November, 2011 from History News Network http://hnn.us/articles/514.html Plagiarism dot org, (2011) what is plagiarism? Retrieved November, 2011 from Plagiarism dot ORG http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_article_what_is_plagiarism.html Copyright Act. (1970) Copyright Act of 1790 1 Statutes at Large, 124. Retrieved November, 2011 from Copyright. Gov http://www.copyright.gov/history/1790act.pdf J. Lynch (2011) The Perfectly Acceptable Practice of Literary Theft: Plagiarism, Copyright, and the

Eighteenth

Century.

Retrieved

December,

2011

from

writing-world.com

http://www.writing-world.com/rights/lynch.shtml Laws.com copyright (2005), Types of plagiarism. Retrieved December, 2011 From Milne Library, SUNY Geneseo http://www.geneseo.edu/~brainard/plagiarismtypes.htm Why Students Plagiarize? (2011) Plagiarism among the Students. Retrieved December, 2011 From Dupli Checker http://www.duplichecker.com/Whystudentplagiarize.asp The Guide to Plagiarism and Cyber-Plagiarism (2011) Why Students Plagiarize. Retrieved December,

2011

From

University

of

Alberta

Libraries

http://guides.library.ualberta.ca/content.php?pid=62200&sid=457755 Education Act of 1982 (2006), Duties and Obligations, Teacher's Obligations. Retrieved December,

2011

From

Chan

Robles

http://www.chanrobles.com/bataspambansabilang232.htm

Virtual

Law

Library


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 14 T. Gabriel (2010 Plagiarism Lines Blur for Students in Digital Age. Retrieved December, 2011 From The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/02/education/02cheat.html? pagewanted=1 Education Week (2011), Facts about Plagiarism. Retrieved December, 2011 from plagiarism dot ORG http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_facts.html L. Obispo (2011), Facts about Plagiarism. Retrieved December, 2011 from plagiarism dot ORG http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_facts.html R. Ann (2010), Study: Most student plagiarizers don’t understand rules. Retrieved December, 2011 from Diamond Back Online http://www.diamondbackonline.com/news/study-most-studentplagiarizers-don-t-understand-rules-1.1176432 Harvard scholars (2002), Harvard Plagiarism Archive. Retrieved December, 2011 From Harvard Plagiarism Archive http://authorskeptics.blogspot.com/ Stephen M (2004), Ogletree Faces Discipline for Copying Text. Retrieved, 2011 From The Harvard

Crimson

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2004/9/13/ogletree-faces-discipline-for-

copying-text/ G uide To P lagi aris m A nd C yber-P lag iaris m (2011), Reas ons F or P lagiar izing. R etr ieved

D ece mb er,

2011

F rom

Univ ers it y

http://guides.library.ualberta.ca/content.php?pid=62200&sid=457755

Of

A lber ta

Librar ies


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 15 Capital Community College (2011). Writer's Practical Guide to MLA Documentation. Retrieved December,

2011

from

Capital

Community

College

http://www.ccc.commnet.edu/mla/practical_guide.shtml

J. Ruskalian (2009), You Didn’t Plagiarize, Your Unconscious Did. Retrieved December, 2011 From

The

Daily

Beast

http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2009/07/06/you-didn-t-

plagiarize-your-unconscious-did.html C. Davidoff (2010), Unoriginal Sins, Defining plagiarism in the digital age. Retrieved December, 2011 From UB Boston University Today http://www.bu.edu/today/2010/unoriginal-sins/ Plagiarism dot Org (2011). What is plagiarism? Retrieved December, 2011 From Plagiarism dot Org http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_article_educational_tips_on_plagiarism_prevention.html PlagiarismdotOrg (2011), did you Know? Retrieved December, 2011 From Plagiarism dot Org http://www.plagiarism.org/plag_article_did_you_know.html W Arenson (2008), Columbia Cites Plagiarism by a Professor. Retrieved December, 2011 From The

New

pagewanted=all

York

Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/21/education/21prof.html?


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 16 ANEXES: 

RESEARCH PAPER DRAFTS:

NOVEMBER 29th, 2011. INTRODUCTION: The most important tool human beings have for uttering ideas is communication; each person is unique and has the capacity of thinking and expressing different thoughts and is completely prepared to create new concepts and dialogs. As a result, autonomy and originality appears but at the same time imitation is born. One of the most used ways of appropriating of others ideas is plagiarizing. In fact, this idea emerged approximately in the 16 th century and was widely tolerated by people. But, times changed and the concept that people had became contrary. According to Plagiarism dot org (2011), in its article what is plagiarism? It is said that plagiarism is “to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one`s own… without crediting the source” (p.1) Not only it is judged as a fraud, but also it is considered as an offense to the original author. Talking about plagiarism at schools and universities, certainly, students and teachers are equally culpable of plagiarizing. According to History News Network (2011), in its article What is Plagiarism? The term plagiarism came from the Latin extractions plagiare, to steal, and plagiarius, kidnapper (p.1). In addition, writing. Com In the article The Perfectly Acceptable Practice of Literary Theft: Plagiarism, Copyright, and the Eighteenth Century points out that the word was born in the 16 th century when people from that epoch wanted to be artists easily and avoiding unique work. Movements like the modernist and postmodern increased the problem; indeed, people thought that their works had to be as similar as possible to those of their colleagues if they wanted to


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 17 endure; thus, to plagiarize was widely practiced through that epoch and most of people tolerated it and did not consider it wrong. (p.4) NOVEMBER 30th, 2011 HOMEWORK People were ambitious and did not care about their fellows. But, the acceptation of that practice among people gradually diminished because original authors started to defend their works. Famous people whose works were so important started using security through copyright acts; to illustrate, the first copyright that was published to protect books and others ideas was the Copyright Act of 1790 which helped many authors with their trouble. However, that tool will not be a sufficient solution due to the fact that plagiarism could be done in different ways and sometimes it was not necessary stealing the complete book or copy to create the offense. DECEMBER 1st, 2011. Nowadays, to plagiarize literary means a theft. Definitely, this violation is as huge as a crime and it can be punished in several ways. Generally speaking, plagiarism at schools and at universities is seen as a dishonest act and can bring to the person expulsion, disciplinary consequences, and the termination of the contract in working cases. Although sometimes plagiarism is caused unconsciously, it is consider as enormous as the other types of it. Some of the most common ways of plagiarizing are characterized by recycling ideas and changing some words so as to create a document without giving any credit. For instance, according to Laws.com copyright (2005), in the article Types of plagiarism, there exists five kinds of plagiarizing “Word Switch plagiarism”, which is changing some words and avoiding quotations in order to show that this is your original work; other type is “Metaphor Plagiarism”, that is characterized by using metaphors without citing the author; “Reasoning style plagiarism”


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 18 is made when people use just an article for creating ideas in the same order that it although it does not have the same words. Another is “Idea plagiarism” and it happens when people do not distinguish common knowledge like the form of the earth from new researches done by scientists that have to receive the credit for their ideas. Finally, “Copy and paste plagiarism”, is done using other ideas without references of the source. DECEMBER 5th, 2011. HOMEWORK Although plagiarism is widely known around many different topics, in this research it is going to be discussed only at schools and universities. In this context, it is clear that students and teachers are guilty in the same way of plagiarizing. Furthermore, it is necessary to clarify that not all the students or all the teachers plagiarize; this work is referring to those who commit the fault. First, it is sure that plagiarism occurs because professors do not inform their students about this topic. To exemplify, according to Why Students Plagiarize (2011), in the article Plagiarism among Students, it is shown that “The first thing that promotes the plagiarism among students are the teacher themselves, who do not make them aware about this issue, the types and even the results of plagiarism” (p.2). Consequently, students get confused and plagiarism easily appears. So, the million-dollar question is how can students understand this term if professors do not fulfill their obligation of instructing them? In the "Education Act of 1982” (2006), “Teacher's Obligations” it is stipulated that a professor must “Participate as an agent of constructive social, economic, moral, intellectual, cultural and political change in his school and the community within the context of national policies” (P.1. Sec. 16) But, what happens when they do not complete that role? Surely, the answer would be that the professors are already part of


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 19 the problem and the permanence of plagiarism at schools and universities is so related with their acts. DECEMBER 6th, 2011. Then, due to the fact that students are uninformed they are plagiarizing. Indeed, it is very common to see around institutes many students that do not understand what plagiarism is, and the result is that they commit the fault unconsciously. According to The Guide To Plagiarism And Cyber-Plagiarism (2011) in the article Why Students Plagiarize, the confusion that students have about the concept usually leads them to misquote the sources; in addition, in this article it is said that “up to 60% of students cannot distinguish between paraphrased and plagiarized text” (p.3) Moreover, not citing sources joins with the misunderstanding that exists between common knowledge and plagiarism. To illustrate, there is a particular case of a student of the University of Maryland, in the article Plagiarism Lines Blur for Students in Digital Age (2010), written by Gabriel; the student was castigated because she copied some phrases from Wikipedia, but her defense was that common knowledge do not need to be cited even less if that appeared on a collaborative web page (p.1). Although she learned the lesson through experience, other people are falling in the mistake in this time without knowing about it. Second, it is completely guaranteed that professors are guilty of plagiarizing on papers due to carelessness. To be more explicit, professors who write documents like essays, researches, books, and so on, are plagiarizing when they forget to quote a source. To exemplify, Harvard scholars (2002), in the article Harvard Plagiarism Archive, talks about Ogletree, a Harvard Law professor that assured he forgot to quote some phrases of other authors into his book; indeed, he stated “'I delegated too much responsibility to others…I was negligent in not overseeing more


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 20 carefully the final product that carries my name� (p.1) furthermore, in the article Ogletree Faces Discipline for Copying Text (2004), written by Marks, he also notified that this mistake was produced also by his two assistants that had forgotten to quote six paragraphs of other novelists. (p.1) it is obvious that those mistakes are the result of the carelessness that he had at time of performing his work and to say that his helpers were the culpable, is an excuse. Continuing with the topic, carelessness among students has made that they plagiarize too. When they do not follow the process of quoting sources as they are writing the result could be that proper work mixes up with others. According to reasons for plagiarizing (2011), in the article guide to plagiarism and cyber -plagiarism, it is stated that students are plagiarizing because they are not saving references when they are writing, besides, they are not quoting the sources and finally when they want to organize the text it is not recognized the proper work from the other due to the disorder. (p.1) definitely, if people follow an instruction at time of producing a work, the result would be satisfactory and without plagiarism. To explain, Capital Community College (2011), in the document Writer's Practical Guide to MLA Documentation, explains that writing a document must has an order so as to guarantee the success of it; in fact, it is displayed how to organize the references, to cite sources, and to put food notes and endnotes when necessary. (p.1) to forget quoting is not an excuse, it is fundamental to be careful at time of working on papers in order to exterminate definitely plagiarism. DECEMBER 8th, 2011. I have to reorganize all the subtopics. DECEMBER 13th, 2011.


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 21 As a third point of the research, some authors express a different point of view about plagiarism. Like Ruskalian (2009), who in the article You Didn’t Plagiarize, Your Unconscious Did clearly shows that for him using other ideas is common and sometimes done unconsciously. To illustrate the point, some of his interviewed colleagues said “Clearly all of us, referring to journalists, probably appropriate phrases or ideas, on occasion, without realizing it 4” (p.1) … “I really think that at a very simple level, these things are happening all the time. You know, your friend uses some expression and you pick it up and use it too” 5 (p.2) surely, this is unacceptable. Considering that plagiarism is to steal other work regardless of it is done conscious or unconsciously, any excuse supports plagiarism. To reinforce, Davidoff (2010), the author of the document Unoriginal Sins, Defining plagiarism in the digital age, has shown the answer of Mehegan, one of his helpers in the development of the work; in fact he said “There are those who say that unconscious plagiarism is possible, but it seems to me that if it’s possible, then it’s a kind of a mental illness. If you don’t know the difference between what someone else said and what you said, then there’s a problem with identifying yourself.” (p.1) hence, it is deduced that plagiarism stays among us as the result of attitudes and ambiguous thoughts like the mentioned before which only diminishes the seriousness of plagiarism. DECEMBER 15th, 2011. Summarizing ideas, one interesting web page that supports many topics already discussed through the essay is PlagiarismdotOrg (2011). Indeed, in its article What is plagiarism explains why people are plagiarizing; some reasons given were that they think it is adequate, they are not going to be caught, they just did it because it is usual among population; furthermore, many other were excuses for committing plagiarism. The most used were misinformation, lack of education, 4

Roediger, one of the interviewed for the article expressed this thought.

5

Howard Schneider, dean of the School of Journalism at New York's Stony Brook University.


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 22 cultural thought (it is said that some communities consider knowledge as universal and it does not belong to anybody) 6 (p.1) although people think those are acceptable reasons for plagiarizing, the sole reality is that plagiarism is a crime that must be avoided; if not, it must be punished. As the article stipulated, “It doesn't matter if you intend to plagiarize or not! In the eyes of the law, and most publishers and academic institutions, any form of plagiarism is an offense that demands punitive action. Ignorance is never an excuse.” (p.1) Another important discovery done through this investigation and supported by the pages already quoted is that students are plagiarizing because they do not have moral; but the worrying thing is teachers are responsible. A survey done by Education Week (2011), in the article Facts about Plagiarism, demonstrates that“74% of students admitted that at least once during the past school year they had engaged in "serious" cheating; and 47% of students believe their teachers sometimes choose to ignore students who are cheating”. (p.1) unquestionably, students do it because they know it is not consider a huge fault by adults; but, more astonishing is teachers do not take the necessary measures to rectify the mistake. On the contrary, they prefer to be outside from the situation; like Obispo, a professor, that in the web page plagiarism dot ORG (2011) pointed out “With respect to cheating, I'm just in denial. I just don't want to deal with it because I know it is a huge problem” (p.1) additionally, investigations done by Renzoulli (2010), of Swarthmore College, in the article Study: Most student plagiarizers don’t understand rules corroborates that "College instructors often view policing plagiarism and teaching students about it as outside their responsibilities"(p.2) normally, that kind of attitude is not hoped under any circumstance; but the cruel reality is that professors are part of the problem and they realized it long time ago. 6

Taken from international students and plagiarism (2005): an analysis of the reasons for plagiarism among international foundation students (p.4)


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 23 Finally, it is necessary to say that students and teachers are guilty of plagiarism because they do it consciously most of the time. According to PlagiarismdotOrg (2011), in the article did you Know? “80% of "high-achieving" high school students admit to cheating and did not believe cheating was wrong� (p.1). They consider plagiarism is so common and everybody does it. In addition, professors are plagiarizing formal documents intentionally. An example is a professor at Columbia University (2008), who in the article Columbia Cites Plagiarism by a Professor, written by Arenson, was accused of plagiarizing a document consciously (p.1). Seriously, this behavior among students and teachers must disappear in order to improve adequate customs and put off plagiarism; moreover, community must be involved in this change so as to avoid and interrupt definitely plagiarism outside the classrooms. To sum up, plagiarism is a term known around different lands, but talking about schools and universities the responsibility of it rests on students and teachers. First, because they are uninformed about the topic and as a result they plagiarize. Second, they do not take care at time of presenting written works and quotations and references are not included. Third, committing plagiarism conscious or unconsciously is inappropriate and the consequences must be received. Therefore, any given reason is an excuse for accepting and practicing plagiarism due to the fact that creativity among people is fundamental and someone else`s ideas must be respected. To finish, students and teachers have the obligation of consider this topic as important as it is, and they have to implement conducts that could help to destroy this ambiguous method of stealing because contemporary generations deserve the right of creating ideas by themselves. CONCLUSIONS:


Plagiarism, who are guilty students or teachers? 24 

Plagiarism will endure if teachers and students do not avoid stealing others thoughts. The solution surely must be to stimulate people through creative activities like telling original stories without searching information, just using mind for allowing people come up with new ideas; it is necessary to change the way of perceiving the world and recognize the labor of others in order to encourage new ideas.

Performing a written work is a meticulous labor; so, it must be done through preparation, order, and specific objectives. If it is developed in this way, certainly problems with quotations or references will disappear.

Excuses that people give when they commit plagiarism are unnecessary. That is because human beings are capable of creating unique ideas without stealing someone else. Moreover, organization and concentration are abilities all people can develop before doing an activity; and plagiarism will be in ruins if people start thinking in a unique way and forgetting inappropriate behaviors.

Plagiarism will be evaporated if community, teachers and students avoid using it. Furthermore, if they denounce cases of plagiarism and explain to other people the importance of being originals surely creativity will endure before than plagiarism.


Plagiarism