Did You Write This?

Make of this story what you will, but it appears to confirm what many educators around the country have shared with us: plagiarism is not only getting worse, but is generally poorly understood by most students.  Universities around the country have reported increasing instances of students turning in work that has clearly been copied from other sources.  Many classroom teachers have reported that many students openly borrow from public sources without even bothering with attribution.

The Times argues that in an age of open information exchange, the line between one’s own work and ‘common knowledge’ may be blurring:

It is a disconnect that is growing in the Internet age as concepts of intellectual property, copyright and originality are under assault in the unbridled exchange of online information, say educators who study plagiarism.

Digital technology makes copying and pasting easy, of course. But that is the least of it. The Internet may also be redefining how students — who came of age with music file-sharing, Wikipedia and Web-linking — understand the concept of authorship and the singularity of any text or image. (more…)

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