Presentation on theme: "Turnitin or Turnitoff? Academic Integrity The UWS approach Liz Curach University Librarian UWS."— Presentation transcript:
Turnitin or Turnitoff? Academic Integrity The UWS approach Liz Curach University Librarian UWS
Plagiarism: a new phenomenon? "In comparing various authors with one another, I have discovered that some of the gravest and latest writers have transcribed, word for word, from former writers, without making acknowledgement.” Pliny the Elder (23 AD-79 AD), Natural History
Plagiarism defined.. Plagiarism is the presentation of the thoughts or work of another as one’s own St James Ethics Centre … to take and use the writings of another (from the Latin ‘plagiarus’, meaning kidnapper) Oxford English Dictionary
Plagiarism on the rise? 18,000 participant study confirmed that internet plagiarism was prevalent across 23 US institutions: –38% of participants had engaged in more than 1 instance of ‘cut and paste’; –44% believed such behaviour trivial and not cheating; –90% of students believe cheaters are never caught or disciplined. Plagiarism from books and paper based materials remains slightly more popular than internet plagiarism. Rutgers University, 2003
Plagiarism on the rise? (cont’d) 75% of respondents never plagiarised 9% plagiarised once 18% plagiarised more than once 3% believe that plagiarism not cheating 78% classify plagiarism as moderate to severe cheating Detection rate is only 3% 83% of respondents disapprove of plagiarism JISC Plagiarism Advisory Service (UK), 2004
It’s easy to cheat …. Verbatim copying – copy / paste Recycling: same assignment submitted more than once for different courses Ghost writing (including mum and dad) “Paper mills” and cheat sites (250+) offer many resources (free and fee based) for student “success”
Why do students plagiarise? Poor time management or research skills Lack of interest in the subject Lack of knowledge or ability to write / research an assignment Problems of writing in a second language Poor citation skills Low likelihood of detection Ease of cut and paste from web and cheat sites Over-emphasis on grades vs learning Lack of knowledge of what constitutes plagiarism or academic integrity
The UWS approach to plagiarism prevention Clear and widely promulgated policies; A whole of institution commitment to academic integrity; UWS values Scholarly Rigour and Integrity University wide support structures; Availability of Turnitin text matching software
Turnitin Electronic text matching software (digital ‘fingerprinting’); Developed in US by Prof James Barrie; Demonstrates highest rate of detection from amongst a range of subscription checking tools; UWS focus on prevention rather than detection.
What text is matched? Internet resources (4.5 bill www pages, including archived pages; Proprietary databases (Gale, Proquest, e- books, newspaper collection) Previously submitted student papers (10 mill +) Assignments obtained from paper mills
What is not matched.. Print based materials; Range of proprietary databases – e.g. Psychinfo, Ebsco …..; Diagrammatic, pictorial representations, mathematical formulae; Anything pre www
Plagiarism detection? NO! Turnitin does not detect plagiarism; Matched text does not necessarily translate to plagiarism; Turnitin cannot ‘think’ or apply qualitative judgements; Turnitin does not differentiate between legitimate citation and unsourced secondary text used either in error or illegitimately
How Turnitin works ….
Originality reports Highlight matched sentences / phrases; Provide links to original source; Indicate overall percentage of matched text - ‘similarity index’; Colour coding assists in interpretation; Academic judgement must be applied in interpreting the originality reports.
Turnitin as an educative tool Students self submit draft assignments prior to due date for originality checking; –Multiple submissions permitted up until due date; –Students review originality reports, correcting citations, paraphrasing etc. prior to final submission; –Academic may or may not wish to review final originality report.
Turnitin as a punitive tool Mandated use of Turnitin across university; Students not granted access to originality reports; Turnitin reports used to “catch out” potential plagiarists. The punitive approach will fail! The primary goal should be prevention rather than punishment.
Turnitin detractors …. Turnitin database does not include all internet accessible materials; Does not include print based materials; “Matches” commonly used words and phrases; Makes profit from student work by storing submitted material in database.
However …. Turnitin is but one tool in the academic integrity toolbox: –Design assessment to minimise potential plagiarism; –Make expectations clear to students; –Monitor, detect and respond to incidences of possible plagiarism; –Teach skills of summarising and paraphrasing; –Teach skills of referencing and citation; –Teach skills of critical analysis and interpretation; –etc Centre for the Study of Higher Education, 2006
Turnitin claims … “ Students will realise that they can no longer “borrow” intellectual materials without being at risk of being caught. They will submit their own work, and as a result educational quality, student morale and ethics will improve”
Discussion and questions …. Turnitin, or Turnitoff ??