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Plagiarism

What is plagiarism?

‘Plagiarism is when you pretend that you have written or created a piece of work that someone else originated. It is cheating, it is dishonest, and it could jeopardise your exam results.’ 

Consider this question

Your best friend rang you last night. She is really upset because she hasn’t done her assessment task for CAPE. She doesn’t know what the question means. She can’t do it in time. She asks you to email your finished assessment task.

If you give your friend your assessment task, she could be accused of plagiarism if she uses it. It’s the night before it’s due, chances are that she will.

The big issue is academic honesty. You should tell her, ‘Just do it yourself.’ Otherwise it is cheating and you are part of it.

Why does plagiarism matter?

Because it is cheating. 

It is unethical and dishonest.

  • Authors own their words and ideas. They are not yours to take.
  • When you research the writings of others, you must acknowledge the fact that you have used them.
  • If you do not acknowledge which authors’ words and ideas you have used, then you are taking them as your own.
  • You are not developing the skills and knowledge that are important for your learning development and life ahead.

Plagiarism is a serious and punishable academic offence.

If plagiarism is detected your school may refuse to certify your project as ‘authentic work’. Your teachers must be satisfied that the work you are presenting is your own, particularly in tasks that require work to be done at home.

Any help you have received must be acknowledged. Assessment gives students opportunities: to research deeply to connect with different points of view to learn how to develop a personal point of view and to express it clearly. If you are plagiarising, you are not gaining any deep knowledge.

What are the most common forms of plagiarism?

  • Copying, buying, stealing or borrowing someone else’s work in part or in whole and presenting it as your own
  • Using material directly or by changing the words from books, journals, CDs or the internet without acknowledging the source
  • Submitting work that contains a large contribution from another person-such as a parent, tutor or another student- who is not acknowledged
  • Paying someone to write or prepare material that is associated with a task, such as process diaries, logs and journals.

Plagiarism is:

  • Using the ideas of others as if they were your own. Right. This is a definition that describes plagiarism in any context.

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