Turning the table on Turnitin®: The Student Perspective Dr Stephan Dahl Middlesex University Business School Published as ...
Background <ul><li>Increased concern over plagirarism in academia, especially “copy and paste” - steadily increasing (Unde...
Difinition <ul><li>Ambiguous definition of what is plagiarism: “anything where a student incorporates a substantial, unack...
Solutions <ul><li>Ideas to resolve the problem: - carrot:  raising student awareness (Carroll, 2002) honour codes (McCabe,...
Detection <ul><li>Originally standalone systems, used only to “search and scan” </li></ul><ul><li>Online submission altern...
Criticism <ul><li>Lack of human judgment (Carbone, 2001) </li></ul><ul><li>Storage of students’ work for profit and withou...
Methodology <ul><li>Exploratory study </li></ul><ul><li>24 students on MA in Middlesex </li></ul><ul><li>22 Questions: 7 c...
Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average “ I find Turnitin easy to use” 45.8% (11) 45.8...
Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average I like to see my originality report 20.8% (5) ...
Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average I would prefer to get more guidance about what...
Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average Turnitin usually finds the sources I use for m...
Some Interesting Points <ul><li>convenient/easy 0.668. </li></ul><ul><li>convenient/more modules 0.517 </li></ul><ul><li>e...
More interesting points <ul><li>happy plagiarism/unsure quoting –0.545 </li></ul><ul><li>unsure quoting/pref paper 0.517 <...
2 groups of students? <ul><li>Happy to see introduction of turnitin® & confident in referencing/citing </li></ul><ul><li>U...
Summary <ul><li>Students are generally happy about turnitin® </li></ul><ul><li>There is no real “criminalisation” feeling ...
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Turning the Table on Turnitin

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Student perception of plagiarism detection software

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Turning the Table on Turnitin

  1. 1. Turning the table on Turnitin®: The Student Perspective Dr Stephan Dahl Middlesex University Business School Published as Dahl, Stephan: Turnitin®: The student perspective on using plagiarism detection software, Active Learning in Higher Education, July 2007, Volume 8, No. 2, 173-191
  2. 2. Background <ul><li>Increased concern over plagirarism in academia, especially “copy and paste” - steadily increasing (Underwood and Szabo, 2003) - tidal wave of academic dishonesty (Wood,2004) </li></ul><ul><li>A lot of work plagiarised 38% & 40 % Hansen, 2003 33% Szabo, 2004 75% Eagle & Hunt, 2005 Business students more prone to plagiarism (Smyth & Davis, 2004) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Difinition <ul><li>Ambiguous definition of what is plagiarism: “anything where a student incorporates a substantial, unacknowledged amount of material derived from the work (published or unpublished) of another student or source is seen as plagiarism” (Plagiarism Advisory Service,2006). </li></ul>
  4. 4. Solutions <ul><li>Ideas to resolve the problem: - carrot: raising student awareness (Carroll, 2002) honour codes (McCabe, 2001) - stick: detection systems (Frey, 2001) punitive (Devlin, 2006) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Detection <ul><li>Originally standalone systems, used only to “search and scan” </li></ul><ul><li>Online submission alternative to paper based systems </li></ul><ul><li>Evolved into more complex systems: - Feedback tools - Collaboration tools - Peer-Review tools - Integration with VLEs </li></ul>
  6. 6. Criticism <ul><li>Lack of human judgment (Carbone, 2001) </li></ul><ul><li>Storage of students’ work for profit and without alternative/consent Foster (2002) argues itself plagiarism </li></ul><ul><li>“ Criminalisation” of students </li></ul><ul><li>BUT…what do the students think of it all? </li></ul>
  7. 7. Methodology <ul><li>Exploratory study </li></ul><ul><li>24 students on MA in Middlesex </li></ul><ul><li>22 Questions: 7 comparing Turnitin to paper-submission 7 feelings about originality reports etc 3 confidence about referencing etc 4 overall confidence/impression </li></ul>
  8. 8. Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average “ I find Turnitin easy to use” 45.8% (11) 45.8% (11) 4.2% (1) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 1.67 “ I find Turnitin a convenient way to submit my assignments/coursework” 50% (12) 41.7% (10) 4.2% (1) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 1.62 I find Turnitin more convenient than handing in my work at the student office 70.8% (17) 20.8% (5) 8.3% (2) 0% (0) 0% (0) 1.38 I prefer handing in paper assignments 0% (0) 8.3% (2) 16.7% (4) 45.8% (11) 29.2% (7) 3.96 I prefer getting my feedback electronically rather than on a paper based coursework front sheet 25% (6) 50% (12) 16.7% (4) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 2.00 I prefer to see my grades electronically on Turnitin rather than on a paper based coursework front sheet 33.3% (8) 50% (12) 16.7% (4) 0% (0) 0% (0) 1.83 I would prefer it if more modules would use Turnitin for submitting assignments/coursework 37.5% (9) 50% (12) 8.3% (2) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 1.79
  9. 9. Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average I like to see my originality report 20.8% (5) 62.5% (15) 12.5% (3) 0% (0) 4.2% (1) 2.04 I find the originality report easy to understand 12.5% (3) 50% (12) 29.2% (7) 8.3% (2) 0% (0) 2.33 I am afraid that I may be accused of plagiarism based on the originality report although it is not true 25% (6) 37.5% (9) 20.8% (5) 12.5% (3) 4.2% (1) 2.33 Turnitin makes me unsure about what materials I can quote or use in my assignment 4.2% (1) 37.5% (9) 20.8% (5) 20.8% (5) 16.7% (4) 3.08 I get anxious about my originality score when I submit my work to Turnitin 16.7% (4) 29.2% (7) 16.7% (4) 29.2% (7) 8.3% (2) 2.83 I am happy that Turnitin makes plagiarism a lot harder 20.8% (5) 33.3% (8) 33.3% (8) 12.5% (3) 0% (0) 2.37 Turnitin makes me feel as if something is being done about plagiarism 29.2% (7) 33.3% (8) 33.3% (8) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 2.13
  10. 10. Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average I would prefer to get more guidance about what plagiarism is 12.5% (3) 54.2% (13) 25% (6) 8.3% (2) 0% (0) 2.75 I am confident when writing a bibliography 8.3% (2) 29.2% (7) 45.8% (11) 12.5% (3) 4.2% (0) 2.50 I have read up about how I should reference something correctly after starting to use Turnitin 12.5% (3) 41.7% (10) 29.2% (7) 16.7% (4) 0% (0) 2.58 I feel confident about quoting other peoples’ works correctly 16.7% (4) 29.2% (7) 33.3% (8) 20.8% (5) 0% (0) 2.46
  11. 11. Statement Strongly Agree Agree Undicided Disagree Strongly Disagree Average Turnitin usually finds the sources I use for my assignments 4.2% (1) 54.2% (13) 33.3% (8) 8.3% (2) 0% (0) 1.96 Overall, Turnitin is reliable 16.7% (4) 70.8% (17) 12.5% (3) 0% (0) 0% (0) 2.50 Overall, Turnitin originality reports are accurate 8.3% (2) 37.5% (9) 50% (12) 4.2% (1) 0% (0) 2.04 I feel safe that my work will not get lost when submitting it via Turnitin 33.3% (8) 37.5% (9) 20.8% (5) 8.3% (2) 0% (0) 2.75
  12. 12. Some Interesting Points <ul><li>convenient/easy 0.668. </li></ul><ul><li>convenient/more modules 0.517 </li></ul><ul><li>easy to use/more modules 0.538 </li></ul><ul><li>convenient/happy plag 0.663 </li></ul><ul><li>BUT convenient/feedback elec 0.146 </li></ul>
  13. 13. More interesting points <ul><li>happy plagiarism/unsure quoting –0.545 </li></ul><ul><li>unsure quoting/pref paper 0.517 </li></ul><ul><li>anxious orig/pref paper 0.745 </li></ul><ul><li>anxious orig/unsure quoting 0.713 </li></ul><ul><li>read how to ref/originality rep. easy 0.571 </li></ul>
  14. 14. 2 groups of students? <ul><li>Happy to see introduction of turnitin® & confident in referencing/citing </li></ul><ul><li>Unhappy about turnitin® & lacking confidence in referencing & citing </li></ul><ul><li>But are the latter “malicious copy & paste”-rs? (consistent with Macdonald and Carroll,2006) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Summary <ul><li>Students are generally happy about turnitin® </li></ul><ul><li>There is no real “criminalisation” feeling </li></ul><ul><li>Confidence in avoiding plagiarism must be improved: students appear are not malicious cheaters, but rather are confused about what is expected/how to cite etc </li></ul><ul><li>Turnitin® potentially be a conduit for engaging students in citing/referencing? </li></ul>

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