Plagiarism is a form of dishonesty and involves using another person’s academic work, terming it as your own. Such kind of practice is full of deceit and is same as cheating, even if a student engages in it unknowingly. Knowing the plagiarism concept has been important to me as this knowledge prevents me from being a victim of plagiarism. The knowledge of plagiarism is important as it helps students maintain their academic integrity. Personally, I find plagiarism as an important aspect in my academic work because failure to follow the plagiarism rules can jeopardize my education. This essay addresses the concept of plagiarism, plagiarism avoidance, and the importance of plagiarism in colleges and other educational institutions.
Plagiarism encompasses different malpractices. First, turning another person’s work to seem as your own, copying another person’s work without crediting it, failure to use quotation marks while quoting, citing sources incorrectly, using a lot of ideas from someone else work and less ideas of your own; and finally, copying and interchanging words from another person’s work without crediting it. However, it is possible to prevent these cases by simply citing sources.
Plagiarism prevention is a crucial part of academic writing in colleges and other learning institutions. In colleges, students have the opportunity to practice their creativity and come up with new ideas. This way, they are expected to be independent thinkers and be capable of coming up with their own ideas, as their level of intellectual exposure is quite high. Students can therefore avoid plagiarism through multiple ways. First, crediting any sources that are used in one’s writing is one way of avoiding plagiarism. In addition, these sources should be cited correctly. In cases a student wants to use direct quotations, they should use these in a sparing and accurate manner. Patchwriting must be avoided at all cost (Buranen, Roy & Roy, 1999).
Writing summaries is also encouraged. Paraphrasing involves restating another person’s ideas in your own words. This is another way to avoid plagiarism; however, the source must be credited appropriately in the references. While paraphrasing, the paraphrased message must concisely represent the original information, without distorting the meaning.
Plagiarism is an important aspect in colleges and all other educational institutions. Today, many colleges have laid down sets of rules and regulations for addressing plagiarism. Students are greatly discouraged to plagiarize in their academic writing, since this could cost them their grades. Such set of rules are important as they enforce and protect the rights of people’s originality. In most countries, this is a moral obligation, as well as a commercial right. In countries where originality of materials is highly upheld, violators of this copyright law face stiff consequences such as stripping off their academic credentials. In colleges, when instructors suspect plagiarism in a student’s academic work, they follow the right steps in imposing disciplinary measures on the students, which may include cancellation of the work, or the whole course. Both researchers and students in colleges should invest in responsible and independent intellectual works to avoid risking their profession, and education (Eisner & Vicinus, 2008).
Conclusively, plagiarism is an important factor in the education sector. Plagiarizing is considered a great mistake in the academic field, as it is same as stealing someone else intellectual ideas. This is subject to harsh disciplinary actions. Students must therefore know the rules of plagiarism and the process of plagiarism avoidance. This way, they will be sure not to engage in this ill practice knowingly or unknowingly, due to the harsh consequences involved. College administration has a role to play in ensuring that cases of plagiarizing are limited. This way, the students will learn to think independently, therefore enhancing their creativity. If students plagiarize today, the future society will lack independent and creative thinkers.
Buranen, L., Roy, M. & Roy, M. (1999). Perspectives on Plagiarism and Intellectual Property in a Postmodern World. New York: SUNY Press.
Eisner, C. & Vicinus, M. (2008). Originality, Imitation, and Plagiarism: Teaching Writing in the Digital Age. Michigan: University of Michigan Press.
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