Saturday, April 07, 2007

Control c, control v

Control c, control v

Plagiarism

That word sends shivers down every teacher's back. Teachers want students to learn to think for themselves while completing assignments. Teachers do not want to know what other person's ideas are about the subject. However, Teachers do want insight into what a student may have learned when researching an assignment. So it is fine to borrow people's ideas, as long as it is mentioned the idea presented is not their own. For example, a noted quote by Winston Churchill should be quoted as coming from Winston Churchill and not claimed by the student themselves.

This article takes a look at what happens when someone does plagiarize from an article. Sure the article needs a little more work to flesh out ideas a little more sure would have benefitted this article. A real case study on what happens to students when they plagiarize in high school or university might have assisted the author in making their point a little more clearer. However, that is what happens when a young writer, such as the case with this article, writes. In other words, this article is written by a novice writer who is still 'learning the ropes' of writing.

On the other hand lets take a look at what the young author did right:

- She quoted authorities on the plagiarism that would resonate with her intended audience (i.e. young adults would find a grade 6 teacher and a movie reviewer as authorities).

- The authorities she uses to prove her point would provide information in such a way as to be easy to quote from instead of confusing the reader (i.e. a Grade 6 teacher and movie reviewer would use simple language so that the masses would understand instead of a university professor using all sorts of jargon).

- She made the article concise and interesting to warn about the dangers of plagiarism.

Sahar Jafrani, the author, obviously learned something from researching this article. She learned why not to plagiarize. Also, she was able articulate from the point of view of someone her age why it is not a good reason to plagiarize.

If Sahar was my student, she would receive a big pat on the back. In fact, I would be inquiring with her if it was acceptable to use her article to show the rest of the classes I taught why it is not acceptable to plagiarize someone else's ideas. Sometimes, as a teacher, some of the best material to use for teachable moments are provided by the students themselves. Sahar should be proud of herself for providing such material that teachers would be interested in while also warning fellow students about the dangers of Plagiarism.

Footnote: Try the following: highlight a line in this posting and then hit "CTRL C" and then opening Microsoft Word (or some other word processing program) and then hit "CTRL V". It should copy and paste the line highlighted from this posting into the word processing program. To think I learned this from a thirteen year old!

2 comments:

  1. oh my gosh! hey this s sahar, the author of the online article you are talking about from the newspaper brand new planet! i was bored and i searched my name 0n google and what do i find but my name in someones blog! wow i didn't my article affected anyone that much, i'm really flattered haha thnx for the constructive criticism too, ill keep it in mind next time i write an article with a similar context =)

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  2. Thanks for stopping by.

    Thanks also for teaching me the computer shortcut mentioned in your article. I love little techy things like that.

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