One major benefit of quality education is the ability to think constructively towards initiating new ideas and the creative implementation of thoughts towards analytical problem solving. Education aims at the initiative concept of building individual skills relevant in carrying out different tasks and assignments. This aim is however threatened by the increasing number of academic plagiarism among university students. plagiarism justifies academic dishonesty, disrespect, unfairness and irresponsibility because it breaches other people's intellectual property rights. It devalues the integrity of academic qualifications and discourages students who do not engage in such practices (JISC, 2005). Cultural diversity is assumed to play a huge role in plagiarism with the high level of international students and the presumed difference in educational approach. This paper evaluates the influence of national culture on plagiarism, it makes use of 10 statements questionnaire results generated from 5 Canadian and 5 Nigerian Vancouver island university students. Respondents were selected based on their nationality (Canada and Nigeria) and understanding of the term 'plagiarism'. The questionnaires were distributed on 10 suggested reasons why students plagiarize and respondents were meant to choose either agree, disagree or undecided. This aims to understand plagiarism, know the reasons why students plagiarize and find its relatedness to their national culture.
THE CONCEPT OF PLIAGIARISM: WHY DO STUDENTS PLAGIARIZE?
The first step in understanding the plagiarism concept is to get acquainted with the terminology. Plagiarism is a derivative of the Latin word 'plagiarius', which means 'kidnapper' or 'abductor' (yemisi, 2012). It is 'the theft of someone's creativity, ideas or language (Williams, 2002). There is also a clear dissimilarity between deliberate plagiarism and unintentional plagiarism. Deliberate plagiarism is a conscious act of academic material theft which includes hiring or paying for the service of someone else in writing term paper assignments or a purposeful presentation of other peoples written work as one's own work. Unintentional plagiarism, is the indeterminate use of other peoples academic materials due to ignorance of citation and referencing rules which includes copying word for word from written sources without proper acknowledgment of the authors.
There have been several reasons for the consistent academic plagiarism among students, these reasons include lack of knowledge of rules for citation and referencing (JISC, 2005), student's inability to cope with workload and poor time management skills (James, McInnis and Devlin, 2002), pressure to succeed (Introna, et al., 2003), lack of motivation to excel, laziness, cultural differences in learning and presentation styles (Handa and Power, 2005). Many other reasons continue to emerge as more studies are carried out on possible reasons and causes of plagiarism....