Is Plagiarism Relevant at a Computers in Libraries Conference?

How does a talk on plagiarism fit into a conference on computers in libraries? Because the Internet makes it easier than ever to plagiarize, plagiarism has become a significant problem in academic institutions. So yes, this talk was relevant. A panel from Eastern Connecticut State University (ECSU) reviewed what they have done to educate their students and faculty on the plagiarism problem.

The key issues in plagiarism are prevention, detection, policy, and enforcement. At ECSU, a Web site and a blog have been developed to present guidelines for both students and faculty. Students are shown the links the faculty can use to detect plagiarism (one of which is TurnItIn), so they know what the faculty can see. This site has done much to dispel the “Them” vs. “Us” mentality.

The library staff has taken a lead in this area and is active in promoting information literacy as a significant way to deter plagiarism. An unexpected fallout from their educational efforts was a high interest in the subject by the faculty, which has resulted in the library being invited to faculty meetings and even receiving invitations from other institutions to come and present their course.

Don Hawkins
Columnist, Information Today

Comments are closed.