Plagiarizing other Course Sections

While cleaning my email inbox this morning. I saw a link to a paper regarding a plagiarism study. One of the concerns of teachers adopting HyFlex is the same as those adopting asynchronous assessment. They worry about an increase in cheating. I recommend a balance of auto grading and manual. Auto grading of low and no stakes assessment provides immediate feedback to the learner, so they can progress with information. Otherwise, they may not progress while waiting for the teacher feedback. Or they might move on without knowing how or what to correct in their learning process. I expected to see a product analysis but instead found a nifty results table.

Plagiarism data

The data show that overall, of 1023 total assignment submissions, 22% are plagiarized. I do wish they also showed the average grades for plagiarized and non-plagiarized assignments. It would be interesting to know whether plagiarists would have been rewarded if not caught. For example, of the 1023 submissions, 223 were caught by the software. Of the 223, 26% were found by manual grading. That means that 74% would not have been discovered.

What motivated me to write blog was the rate of plagiarism from another section of the course. I recommend team design for courses. It provides a greater wealth of curated and created content. The content should have greater variance and depth. It saves time and enables more student choice. It may also permit ease of keeping the course fresh. Importantly, the grades are more likely to lead to an apples-to-apples comparison across the course sections. However, designers and teachers need to consider how to minimize cross-sectional cheating. In addition, cheating can also occur between past years of the same section. 

Clearly, this paper is old, technology has improved, and assessment strategies are evolving – or should be evolving. However, this is food for thought and I want to know more about similar and recent statistics. It would also be interesting to know the frequency of plagiarism by the same students. Do they consistently cheat? Do they only cheat on assignments with certain formats? Or maybe only on high-stake assignments? I am also curious whether they still learn anything while researching and plagiarizing?


Plagiarism Detection: The Tool And The Case Study
Vladislav Scherbinin School of Information Technology and Communications, American University of Nigeria Lamido Zubairu Way, Yola Township By-Pass, PMB 2250, Yola, Adamawa State, Nigeria

Sergey Butakov Department of Computer Science, Konkuk University, Chungju Campus Gong Dong Yeon Gu Dong Room #107, 322 Danwol-Dong, Chungju, Chungcheongbuk, 380-701, South Korea, ABSTRA

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