Plagiarism Essay

1709 words - 7 pages

Plagiarism
missing works cited

Plagiarism is a distinguished sounding word. One would almost think that it sounds like some lofty philosophical ideal named for the great Greek teacher Plagiarus, something to be aspired to. This is not so. Plagiarism is in fact a moral misdemeanor, and an academic felony. By definition, plagiarism is "a piece of writing that has been copied from someone else and is presented as being your own work." Socrates, Plato and Aristotle would have frowned on such a practice, and "Plagiarus" would have been kicked out of the academy. Such is the fate of many college students today.

Plagiarism exists in greater and lesser forms. It can range anywhere from copying a phrase without giving credit, to copying entire works and submitting them under ones own name. In Steven Wilhoit’s book "Helping Students Avoid Plagiarism", several forms of plagiarism are outlined:

•Buying a paper from research service or term paper mill.
•Turning in another student's work without that student’s knowledge.
•Turning in a paper a peer has written for the student.
•Copying a paper from a source text without proper acknowledgment.
•Paraphrasing materials from a source text without appropriate documentation.
The Internet has made simple an additional type of plagiarism:
•Turning in a paper from a "free term paper" website.

Students throughout the ages have faced the moral dilemma of turning in an original piece, or borrowing someone else’s words. There are many reasons to be tempted into dishonesty. Perhaps one is unsure of his or her writing skill, or knowledge in the subject matter. Maybe there are pressures of time, or the need to get a good grade. The advent of the information age has made the temptation even greater. One has only to sit in front of the computer to access a wealth of information on every subject. Internet technology has given birth to a new form of plagiarism called "cut and paste plagiarism". As the name suggests, the less-than-honest student sits down to the Internet and in the course of browsing a subject, simply copies segments or entire web articles and pastes them onto his or her document. There are even websites that are geared directly toward the student seeking the easy way out, such as School sucks, other people’s papers and evil house of cheat. These are free, or small fee sites that offer prewritten essays and research papers. One can even get a custom written report over the Internet for a fee. Whatever the reason, or however great the temptation, the punishment one faces if caught are severe.

Every school policy I have reviewed in my research states that a student caught for plagiarism faces certain failure of the assignment, possible failure of the class and even expulsion from school. If one is so inclined to cheat in this manner, the consequences would seem to be enough to deter a student from engaging in plagiarism, however this is not the...

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