Teaching Online: Detecting and Preventing Plagiarism

A concern about teaching online involves the authenticity of assessment.  Some instructors are concerned there isn’t a way to verify that the papers/projects/tests being submitted are those of their students. Although in many ways this same statement could be made about the on-site classroom, there is a greater feeling of security when one is able to establish a personal relationship with one’s students.

One way to check a student’s work for suspected plagiarism is to look at his/her postings in a class threaded discussion.  These postings are generally spontaneous and more likely to demonstrate the student’s writing style. If the style differs dramatically from the written report, a red flag would be raised.  For more tips on this subject see – Drexel Library’s Plagiarism Guide .

In addition, a reminder that Saint Joseph’s University subscribes to the anti-plagiarism services provided by Turnitin.com.  This site provides the means to submit students’ papers electronically in order to validate their originality. Turnitin is part of  iParadigms, LLC. Please visit Plagiarism.org, the educational arm of iParadigms, for tips and references on how to avoid plagiarism and cite sources properly.

If you have subscribed to this service in the past, you can login at the site (http://www.turnitin.com/) with your email address and previously assigned password.  Once on your Homepage, click the Add a Class button on the right.  Fill in the requested information and click Submit.

If you are new to this service, please send me your name and email address.  I will enroll you in the service. You will then receive an email from Turnitin with your login information and instructions for accessing the site.

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