Sunday, July 20, 2008

Cut and paste 'not plagiarism',25197,24025610-12332,00.html by Andrew Trounson

I have to say that I found this article absolutely fascinating, the most interesting being the quote below.

"I don't really care if there are bits and pieces in their initial information that is downloaded from different points. What I care about is: do they understand it and did they use that information to come up with a solution to solve a problem?" she said.

Certainly the nature of computing, in particular the internet means that information is more accessible and that research has become a matter of copy and pasting information for assessment tasks. I agree with Dale Spender that perhaps there does need to be a review of citation requirements and assessments. As suggested, students do have a responsibility to ensure that work from others is recognized in their own, but at the same time by copying and pasting information into their own work, students are still required to filter what information fits in order to complete the assessment tasks.

I have to agree as a future adult educator, that

"We still have this responsibility to maintain integrity, we still have a responsibility to ensure that our students are actually learning something, but in the process perhaps we do need to rethink our assessment practices. I don't think citation practices are going to go out the window."

Could the future of academic writing include a new citation technique or recognition system that allows for the mish mash of different bits of unrecognised literature? Or will academic writing continue to be heavily focused on peer reviewed literature and existing citation techniques?

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