. . . while Charlie's explanation sounded fishy, he did
occasionally spout entire passages in class that appeared
to have been memorized from texts. Now we see Rebecca
using the same explanation.
I see the point on the sample TOEFL, but I should
emphasize that most of Rebecca's paper is plagiarized,
and that not all of it is from sample TOEFL answers - part
of it comes from another source. Is it possible that she has
tacked together, from memory, almost exact replications of
multiple sources? Perhaps it is -- it would make Charlie's
story more plausible as well.
Hey all . . . This is an interesting situation, not the least
because Charlie also denied that he had plagiarized and
claimed that he had been writing from memory. . .
Email from an instructor
I just typed this phrase in from Chong's paper:
"an era of extraordinary sophistication and versatility,
which promises to reshape our lives and our world"
From another instructor
I came up with three full pages of links! It's all over the web
-- and nearly every link has Chinese text associated with it.
Most of the pages have lists of short passages. This phrase
often, though not always, is item 81. One of the pages is
titled "TOEFL." Do you suppose this is another instance of
inadvertent copying from memory?
The problem of evidence . . .
I'm in a dilemma here over a student’s paper. I'm dead sure
he didn't write it, but I can find no direct evidence. Every
quote he has cited is correct, and no additional uncited
quotes are in the papers he references. His opening
paragraph is clumsy – the rest are perfectly articulated. I
can't find a match online for a single phrase. I do, however,
find about 8 websites selling a term paper with his title:
Protecting Your Personal Information Online." I would have
to pay upwards of $100 to purchase it myself and it wouldn't
arrive before grades are due.
Can I (should I) accuse without proof?
1. the introductory paragraph begins in textbook form with
the broad 'nowadays' to introduce the topic and narrow to
2) the introduction sentence structures, word choice, and
grammar are consistent with ESL writing
• past tense 'brought' instead of 'bring' to match the
logical tense of 'nowadays‘
• 'becoming more and more' with no predicate adjective
instead of the more concise 'increasing‘
• nonstandard use of 'the' with 'the busy social life‘
• incomplete indirect speech clause 'do not share...'
instead of 'suggest that people should not share‘
3) none of these errors are present in the following
4) a more advanced introduction is exhibited in the second
paragraph. Particularly notable is the introduction of a
person's name in the second sentence and immediate
thrust into that character's world. This is not typical of ESL
intros, but is typical of a western writing style.
5) the two pages contain several in-text citations to the
author's summary of Sweet's article and another
reference work--all in MLA style. This is odd considering
that in this student's entire Psy 620 paper there were
only two in-text citations, both in the APA style that was
taught in HUM608.
6) the complete reference list for the Psy paper had only
four sources, and only two were actually cited in the text
of the paper. This extreme simplicity and lack of research
ability is very different from the complex and skillful
integration of sources in the first two pages of the other
I'd suggest that anyone who used sources in such a
professional way should be able to sit down and write
factual (though not necessarily grammatically sound)
summaries of the sources used in the paper.
I'd suggest a written test based on the sources used in
that paper to determine if he actually read those
sources. If he did, he should have no trouble saying
how long each source was and describing their main
points and conclusions.