Plagiarism Detection and Prevention
The increased development of “online technologies and the exponential growth of the World Wide Web comes increased access to information” (Laureate Education, 2011) and contributes greatly to cheating and plagiarism. The Council of Writing Program Administrators (WAP) interjects that in instructional settings, plagiarism, which occurs when a writer deliberately uses someone else’s language, ideas, or other original (not common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source, is a multifaceted and ethically complex problem.
There are many ways to plagiarise . However, according to (Bull et al., 2009), plagiarism detection software and services can be broadly banded into two groups, those designed to detect plagiarism in computer programs and those designed for detecting plagiarism in text-based documents (p.3). Much plagiarism detector software such as Viper and Turnitin are available to online instructor to control cheating.
Instructional designers should embed that software in the CMS to help alleviate the problem of plagiarism and cheating. The design of assessment should encourage learners to use online writing center to prevent academic dishonesty.
As a current or future online instructor, I would provide a link to the institution’s plagiarism detector software to enable learners to pre-assess their papers before turn them in for grading. I would encourage them to use the school writing center for referencing.
To help detect or prevent cheating and plagiarism, learners need to know and believe that systems are in place to deal with plagiarism quickly and fairly and they need to be introduced to the positive values and expectations as to how they should use and accredit others’ work. Walden University, for instance, uses plagiarism software (Turnitin) materials available to learners and facilitators assess written papers. The software teaches you how to intepret its reports. Nevertheless, institutions should teach learners how to write, quote, and justify their sources of information to avoid cheating and plagiarism.
Batane, T. (2010). Turning to Turnitin to Fight Plagiarism among University Students. Educational Technology & Society, 13 (2), 1–12.
Bull, J. et al. (2001) Technical review of plagiarism detection software report. Luton: Computer
Assisted Assessment Centre. Retrieved August 28, 2009, from:
Palloff, R. & Keith, P. (2010). “Plagiarism and Cheating”. Retrieved from http://sylvan.live.ecollege.com/ec/crs/default.learn?CourseID=5364570&Survey=1&47=6623504&ClientNodeID=984650&coursenav=1&bhcp=1.