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Plagiarism

Resolution Form and Instructions

According to the Undergraduate Catalog, plagiarism is a form of academic dishonesty defined as "the intentional or unintentional copying of language, structure, or ideas of another and attributing the work to one's own efforts" (p. 29). The catalog also states that "when, in the opinion of a faculty member, there is evidence that a student has committed an act of academic dishonesty, the faculty member shall make a formal written charge of academic dishonest, including a description of the misconduct, to the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies." (p. 29).

The Plagiarism Resolution Form may be used by instructors to charge students with a violation of the Academic Integrity policy due to submission of plagiarized work, as long as the academic penalty is not failure of the course. After meeting with the instructor, the accused student may, at their option, (1) sign the form to admit the violation and accept the penalty or (2) indicate that they believe that the charge has been made in error, and should then contact Julia Lusk in the Office of Undergraduate Studies or call 864-656-3022.

If an instructor intends to fail a student for plagiarism, they may not use the form, and must instead contact the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies.

  • Instructions

    1) Instructors that suspect plagiarism in their undergraduate class should download and read the Plagiarism Resolution Form. Download Plagiarism Resolution Form

    2) An instructor that opts to use the form should meet with the student to discuss the evidence of plagiarism.

    3) The instructor should print out and go over the form with the student to make sure they understand the charge and the conditions of the resolution.

    4) If the student agrees that plagiarism was committed, and they agree to the terms of the penalty, they should sign the form. The instructor will sign the form, provide a copy to the student, and send the completed form to the Office of Undergraduate Studies.

    5) Students that accept the charge of plagiarism are required to attend a university workshop on plagiarism within 90 calendar days (exclusive of summer sessions)

    6) See the form for further details. Direct questions to Julia Lusk.

  • Avoiding Plagiarism

    (written by a CU professor for a student take-home assignment

    As someone learning to become a professional, you are responsible for choosing wisely how you represent yourself. Shortcuts are not tolerated in the working world, as they often lead to sub-par work product, and can lead to larger problems affecting society. Plagiarism is a sort of shortcut, where an author uses the thoughts or writings of someone else and claims credit for them as their own work.

    In researching ideas for your own writing, you will read the work of others to learn more about topics in your classes. When you go to write down what you know, you should be synthesizing ideas and issues learned in and out of class. You are creating documents that reflect your own understanding of the world. You will use your own words. Sometimes what you want to say is best encapsulated by the words of others, so you might want to use their words verbatim. Any time you use someone else’s words it should be very clear that they are attributed to someone else. If you quote up to a sentence of someone else’s work just use quotation marks. For longer passages use a block quote. Always indicate the source of the quote directly after it is made.

    Using the words of others should be relatively rare. If you wrote a paper by stringing together a number of quotes from experts, the result would be nothing more than a mock encyclopedia entry. It would not reflect in any genuine way what you know. It is common for students, particularly those that have not been exposed to the rigors of college level work, to treat an assignment as a sort of “scavenger hunt.” They troll the Internet looking for facts that pertain to their topic, and string them together in a marginally coherent way. This is not writing, and it is plagiarism.

    It is appropriate to keep what you learn from sources in one place to help you write your papers. But you are obligated to keep track of where you got the information. After you have researched your topic and amassed a collection of information you need to write your paper, you will begin to write about what you know. When it is clear that you need to identify the source of information, do so with numbered footnotes or a referencing style like the APA style.

    For this assignment it is okay to talk with your classmates about the ideas. But when it comes time to write up your answers I expect your words to be yours alone. Do not share your work with your classmates, as they may not have the same work ethic as you do. Do not ask your classmates to share their writing with you, either. In the end, your work should be a reflection of what you understand about a topic, presented in your own words.

  • Plagiarism FAQ

    Why is plagiarism such a big deal?
    You are attending college in order to learn a field of study and become a professional. Professionals do their own work – they could be fired if they “borrowed” work from others. Plagiarism is the lazy way to produce work; you are using someone else’s ideas instead of your own. But the whole reason you came to Clemson is to learn, and we measure that learning by having you write – in your own words – what you understand.

    I always paraphrased in my high school papers. Isn’t that good enough?
    No, because what most students mean by “paraphrasing” is taking actual writing of others and rearranging words. Your instructors expect you to read, learn and assimilate ideas. Then, when you write you are using your own voice, choosing your own words and putting down what you understand. You don’t do that with “paraphrasing.”

    Okay, I need some examples so that I understand what you mean!
    Go to these Web sites, which have good examples for you to follow:

    Do’s and Don’ts (University of California, Davis)
    Examples (Indiana University)  

    But I can re-use my own essays, right?
    No. Self-plagiarism is still plagiarism – you did not do the work as required by your instructor. Make sure you talk with your instructor about using parts of work done for previous classes.

Plagiarism Resources

From the Clemson University Undergraduate Announcements:
B. Academic dishonesty is further defined as: 1) Giving, receiving or using unauthorized aid on any academic work; 2) Plagiarism, which includes the intentional or unintentional copying of language, structure or ideas of another and attributing the work to one’s own efforts;

Guidelines for Students (University of Pretoria)

Plagiarism in Colleges in USA (Ronald B. Standler)

Avoiding Plagiarism (University Libraries)

You Tube video on Plagiarism