Preventing and Detecting Plagiarism

GTCC Writing Centers
◦ Verbatim
Works Cited/References
Copying from a source verbatim without
using quotation marks and/or citing the
Paraphrasing without citing the source.
Paraphrasing inadequately (e.g. changing a
word here and there).
Intentional—a student uses material written
in whole or in part that someone else wrote
without quoting or crediting the material
◦ E.g. Downloading a paper off the internet
◦ Copying and pasting passages from an internet
source into an essay
◦ Using a paper written by a friend
Unintentional—a student does not correctly
credit a source
◦ E.g. Citing a paragraph copied from a source but
failing to put it in quotation marks to indicate it is a
direct copy
Include a plagiarism/academic honesty policy
in your course syllabus.
Have students sign a plagiarism/syllabus
Indicate in the assignment instructions:
◦ Penalties for plagiarism.
◦ Whether or not sources should be used.
◦ Requirements for documentation style, sources, and
◦ Draft due dates.
Explain the nuances of documentation and
how to avoid plagiarism.
Provide students with additional resources
(e.g. OWL at Purdue).
Show students examples of plagiarism.
Require a plagiarism quiz and/or assignment.
Incorporate class activities, such as:
◦ Plagiarism case studies.
◦ Spot the plagiarized passage.
◦ Documentation style activities.
Use unique, complex topics and change them
◦ Compare/contrast
◦ Works that are not widely written about
◦ Analysis on many levels
Have the class as a whole or groups of
students write on the same topic, research
the topic together, and share source
Use the Q&A type of forum in Moodle for
discussion forums.
Provide students with one or more sources to
use in addition to the ones they find.
◦ Specific number of sources.
◦ Specific types of sources.
◦ Certain number of direct quotations and
paraphrases in the essay.
◦ Research log.
◦ Note cards.
◦ One or more sources to be an interview with a local
expert, like a teacher here at the college.
◦ Students submit annotated photocopies or
printouts of source materials with borrowed
information highlighted.
◦ Students to acknowledge any help they received on
a paper in a coversheet or memo to you (typists,
proofreaders, editors, tutors, etc.).
Give comments on students' drafts.
Have the students draft the essay in class.
Take it up, comment on it, and return it for
Require multiple drafts with handwritten edits
and changes highlighted on the final copy.
Google a phrase or sentence from the paper;
put the phrase or sentence in quotation
marks to limit results to an exact match. (This
also works with the library databases).
Google the sources to make sure they really
Require submission to Turnitin or a similar
Quiz students about their research/papers.
(What was your thesis? What were your main
points? What order did you put them in?)
Conference with students about their
research during the research process. Have
them bring their sources to the conference.
Have students complete a demand writing on
their topic, research process, or sources.
Be suspicious of formatting changes—font
size or color, photocopied essays, etc.
Be suspicious of paper topics that change at
the last minute.
Be suspicious of “perfect” writing; student
writing usually has grammar and spelling
Be suspicious of shifts in vocabulary, tone,
audience, and style.