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Delivering the JISC Plagiarism tool as a preventive measure to poor academic writing rather than a detection method

Tony Ingram, Warwick Manufacturing Group affl., University of Warwick

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The use of software to battle plagiarism focuses largely on detecting and penalising transgressors and using the threat of this to discourage transgression.

There is some evidence that such an approach does not decrease the incidence of plagiarism [1] and merely changes student focus from learning to not breaking rules or not getting caught [2] suggesting that attempts to address plagiarism based entirely on detection and punishment will fail unless the larger issues of academic integrity and honesty are addressed.

This paper describes a successful approach in using plagiarism detection software as a tool to explain the sometimes grey areas of academic honesty to students.

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