The Problem of Plagiarism Word processors and internet have grown old problem of copying the work of others Plagiarism is a form of stealing in which the words and works of others are taken from their name and presented and sold as your own work Word Processor Cut and Paste Functions make it easier than ever imaginable Internet actually markets book reports Record amount of information makes it harder to detect and gives more variety than before
Why Plagiarism is Bad Its Stealing You may or may not believe God will be pissed off Stealing is mark of lack of integrity that does not match the dependence and integrity that society depends on from engineers You are a professional endowed with the trust of society You will let your profession and society down if you are not true to high standards
More Problems Plagiarism is subject to Societal Sanction At the University rules permit a professor to flunk you for a single action or to call on disciplinary bodies to expel you Professional Engineering Societies and Licensing Boards can fine and or eject you or revoke or suspend your license Like to say that companies will shun dishonest people You might just end up working with people that really give you cause to watch your back
Plagiarism is a Bad Technical Idea Remember – Technical Writing is always for a purpose that usually involves selling someone something Copied Passages are usually worded to sell a different purpose, audience or objective They will almost always be sub-optimal for your needs
Does that mean I have to do all original work of my own? No Usually you will present an idea or design tool that you used to do a job and then give credit to the author of that idea or technique Most often use your own word – borrow the idea This way you control all the words to your objective Sometimes individual said things in a uniquely clear way or you need to borrow the authority of another individual Enclose the entire borrowed passage in quotation marks …. Structures may allow you to leave out words without breaking quote marks If you have 1/4 th page of quoted material in a place you probably need to take a hard look at what you are doing
How Do I Use Proper Citations Exact word copies must first be included in quotation marks At the end of a quoted passage or a series of ideas borrowed from another you put a citation to the other author Citation sits at the end of the sentence before the period Sometimes more than one sentence is a borrowed idea Reference goes at the end of the borrowed idea group before moving onto ideas of your own or those borrowed from yet another author
Citation Styles The Number Style (often used in Mining Engineering Mag) Superscript a number at the end of the borrowed material Numbers are based on the order in which the borrowed materials come up Ie 1 is for the first author you borrowed from 2 is for the second author you borrowed from (it is possible that your author may be an organization – example USEPA or CFR) It is possible to have reference 1 to 7 and then another citation to 1 if same source is later borrowed from again in the document
The Paren Author Name Style Another citation style At end of the borrowed material and before the period open with a parenthesis Then place the authors last name Then place a comma Then place the year in which the document that was cited was written Then close the parenthesis Ie (Mouseblaster, 1985).
Citation Styles Coordinate with References or Bibliographies In number style references section will present cited documents and authors in numerical order Ie 1 – Reference Detail 2- Reference Detail 3- Reference Detail In the Paren and Author Method References are placed in alphabetical order by authors last name If author wrote more than one document cited they are grouped by time written next Usually start with most recent and then work back
Advantages/Disadvantages and Preferences Numerical Form is used mostly on short articles with a single primary author The style produces the least conspicuous break-up of the written text I really dislike the number style Economic Geology uses the paren and author style
Why the Numerical Style Stinks You always end up adding or deleting material or an authors idea or citation Now you have to renumber every single citation in the text Also get to rearrange your references section If you swap the order of ideas you present it will usually change the order in which cited authors come up If you’re doing a report as a team then everything everyone else does is affecting you Someone is always last minute Only Defense is to break reference sections down to each section and make sections match author
Virtue of the Paren and Author System There is no commitment to citation order in the text The alphabet took care of that a long time ago Rearrangements of text have no impact on the order of citations It is easy to merge individual authors referenced authors at the end to make a single reference section If you don’t hate the number method now – wait till you’ve done just 1 big document or report with it
What goes in a Citation In the text (Author, Year) Two Authors (Mouseblaster and Pyro, 1987) Three or More Authors (Mouseblaster et al., 1989) Corporate Author (Atlas Powder, 1991) Details of Citations are laid out in style guides Important point – must contain enough information to allow the reader to retrieve and check your source without guessing and fishing
Guidelines for Reference Sections Author, Year, “Article Title”, Name of Book or Magazine, Publisher and or Location something about pages or volume Examples A book Mouseblaster, Samual, 2001, Use of Explosives in Pest Elimination and Control, Bin Ladin Press, Afghanistan, 911 pages.
More Examples A book Chapter Mouseblaster, Samual and Stressman, Aireal, 2001, “Selection of Non-Wetting Fuses for Explosive Shoes”, Chapter 3 in Use of Explosives for Mouse Control in Airplane Kitchens and Laboratories, European Prison Press, pg A Proceedings Paper Hussain, Sadam and Quadafi, Momar, 1989, “Use of Nuclear Weapons in Control of Cockroach Infestations in Restaurant Kitchens”, Symposium on Plutonium Acquisition for Unstable Dictatorships, Bagdad University, March 1 to 8, 1989, Libyan National Press, pg
More Examples A journal article Mouseblaster, Samual et al., 1996, “Limitation of Liability following the Accidental Demolition of the Rietz Hotel while eliminating a mouse infestation in the boiler room”, Journal of Explosives in Pest Control, Blowema Press, Jan- Feb 1996, Vol. 61, pg A Pamphlet Palastinian Authority, No Date, Fetching Underground Game Using Explosive Loaded Beagles, 9 pg.
Non Print Sources McVie, Timothy, 1995, “Elimination of the seed of Federal vermin through the use of explosives at day care centers”, to purify society/articles/McVie/, accessed Sept. 11, 2001.ww.truepatriots.org/methods
The Problem of Non-Public Information Still important to give credit for ideas for ethics sake May also want to borrow the authority of individual that no longer has credit from a source.
Examples Emerson, Eric, 2009, Physician and Sergeant U.S. Marine Corps stationed at Guantanomo Bay, Cuba, Methods of Cleaning Bowel Blockages in Terrorists who refuse to talk using strategic insertion of cherry bombs, received by Eric Blackford, Feb 14, Krager, Blaine, 2009, Director of Blasting at Wildbore Basin Coal Mine, Illinois, Elimination of Offensive Faculty Members in Large Diameter Blast Holes at Mining Operations, personal communications with Mark Thiesinger, April 1, 2009.
Style Guides Specific style guides may have special formatting requirements Illustrations provided give widely practiced standards for citations Important Point All borrowed ideas should give credit to the author from which you obtained the information using A citation in the text And a Reference in the Reference Section