Results are out! Find what you need...fast. Get quick advice or join the chat
Hey! Sign in to get help with your study questionsNew here? Join for free to post

How harsh is plagiarism?

Announcements Posted on
What are your mock exam revision tips?! Share them with our year 10 & 11 students! 19-11-2014
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Okay so I've just finished one of my AS level Literature essays and I'm pleased with how it's turned out. However, before starting it I read an example essay to get some inspiration and I feel one or two of the sections are too similar to the essay I read.

    I haven't copied anything exactly and I made a point to reword anything that was in the example essay.

    Should I leave it or would I be grilled for plagiarising?
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Bump
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Plagiarism is probably the worst thing you can do as an academic. And paraphrasing someone else's work is plagiarism. Either reference it properly or take it out.
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by minnieuk)
    Plagiarism is probably the worst thing you can do as an academic. And paraphrasing someone else's work is plagiarism. Either reference it properly or take it out.
    Thanks for reply.

    It wasn't intentional. When I came to proof read it, I thought it'd be a good idea to check over the example I read and realised a couple of parts are similar. The problem is I've build around said parts and I've got a solid essay. It may prove very difficult to completely rid of the paraphrased parts.

    Foolish mistake to make. Lesson learnt.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Just reference it. We all do it - as long as you credit it to the original you have no worries.
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by minnieuk)
    Just reference it. We all do it - as long as you credit it to the original you have no worries.
    Can I do that? I wasn't aware it was possible. For the record it's an AQA AS level Literature essay analysing the use of imagery throughout a novel. Would my grade suffer as a result of referencing it?

    I think if I spend another couple of hours on it I can almost fully eradicate any potential plagiarism, without compromising the content. However I may still ask my teacher if it would be worth referencing it.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    The board like you to reference as many other works and inspirations as possible - it shows your marker that you're well read and have considered alternative critics/viewpoints.
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Hypedupturtle)
    The board like you to reference as many other works and inspirations as possible - it shows your marker that you're well read and have considered alternative critics/viewpoints.
    So you're saying that should I reference the essay I read I could be accredited for it, even though I've literally paraphrased two small paragraphs therefore not actually offered a new viewpoint?

    Sorry to bombard with questions. No one else in my class has referenced anything and I think my teacher will be slightly bemused should I tell her this.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    id rewrite the similar bits just in case or at least refference them, if they notice it theyre likely to shred your paper and disqualify you from that boards papers and maybe the rest if theyre feeling bitchy, you really dont want that to happen.
    after all whats an extra few minutes writing compared to failing half your alevel?
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by calumsteele1)
    id rewrite the similar bits just in case or at least refference them, if they notice it theyre likely to shred your paper and disqualify you from that boards papers and maybe the rest if theyre feeling bitchy, you really dont want that to happen.
    after all whats an extra few minutes writing compared to failing half your alevel?
    I've been attempting to rewrite them for hours, I'm just worried I haven't changed them enough. Needs a second opinion.

    If I get done for plagiarising then I will probably get disqualified from all A levels and not have a hope in hell of getting to University, so I'm treating the matter with a lot of caution. However, I want to compromise my essay as little as possible in the process.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by jackf1337)
    So you're saying that should I reference the essay I read I could be accredited for it, even though I've literally paraphrased two small paragraphs therefore not actually offered a new viewpoint?

    Sorry to bombard with questions. No one else in my class has referenced anything and I think my teacher will be slightly bemused should I tell her this.
    For my course at least (OCR), critical viewpoints are eminently necessary - you're unable to achieve full marks without including evidence of having considered alternate viewpoints/readings.

    In my coursework for example (which contained footnotes and was therefore more eloquent than this stub I'm providing you) I've included paragraphs with content such as:

    Lyn Hejinian considers that to the post-avant artist 'The self is perceived as “dynamic” rather than “essential”.' Indeed, 'at key moments, an equilibrium is achieved which allows the [artist] glimpses into the universal; the [artist] “traces the primary laws of our nature” (Wordsworth, 78)' - Adam Fieled. This is notably relevant for [text-name] as the narrator is presented as a universally evolving element of the work, almost prime mover (Aristotle) like in essence, engaging on his voyage in search of the Romantic sublime through foray into his own Jungian unconscious, epitomized most efficiently when conveying his '_________________________' (quote from page 123.)

    Throwing ideas in and applying them as a part of your own reading is by no means plagiarism so long as you reference each of them and don't flout the word count. Indeed, they can be highly beneficial both in terms of mark scheme and the overall impact of the essay.

    Just make sure that they each have a distinct purpose and are clearly relevant and expanded.
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Hypedupturtle)
    For my course at least (OCR), critical viewpoints are eminently necessary - you're unable to achieve full marks without including evidence of having considered alternate viewpoints/readings.

    In my coursework for example (which contained footnotes and was therefore more eloquent than this stub I'm providing you) I've included paragraphs with content such as:

    Lyn Hejinian considers that to the post-avant artist 'The self is perceived as “dynamic” rather than “essential”.' Indeed, 'at key moments, an equilibrium is achieved which allows the [artist] glimpses into the universal; the [artist] “traces the primary laws of our nature” (Wordsworth, 78)' - Adam Fieled. This is notably relevant for [text-name] as the narrator is presented as a universally evolving element of the work, almost prime mover (Aristotle) like in essence, engaging on his voyage in search of the Romantic sublime through foray into his own Jungian unconscious, epitomized most efficiently when conveying his '_________________________' (quote from page 123.)

    Throwing ideas in and applying them as a part of your own reading is by no means plagiarism so long as you reference each of them and don't flout the word count. Indeed, they can be highly beneficial both in terms of mark scheme and the overall impact of the essay.

    Just make sure that they each have a distinct purpose and are clearly relevant and expanded.
    Interesting info. Thank you for sharing.
    OCR I think are the most indepth exam board. The amount of detail in the music course is ridiculous. It's a hard subject.
    My Literature course is AQA.

    Interesting excerpt. We've just been encourage to pick an essay title that the teacher has set and write write write. No word on footnotes, references, wider reading etc.

    I think I'm going to have another go at stubbing out any material remotely similar to the example again, tomorrow. Getting sick of this essay now.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by jackf1337)
    Getting sick of this essay now.
    I know the feeling :/
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Its AS level. You don't even have to cite AFAIK. THere is no copyright on idea. Realisticly you'd expect the 10'000 people or so doing the AS level to say a good deal of the same thing - its not as if you're taught enough or learn enough to do anything particularly insightful or original.
    • Thread Starter
    • 9 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by t0ffee)
    Its AS level. You don't even have to cite AFAIK. THere is no copyright on idea. Realisticly you'd expect the 10'000 people or so doing the AS level to say a good deal of the same thing - its not as if you're taught enough or learn enough to do anything particularly insightful or original.
    Great point. I suppose there are only a limited number examples in Fingersmith (book we're studying) where light and dark imagery is used.

    I'm going to attempt a few more changes then get my parents to compare.

    (Original post by Hypedupturtle)
    I know the feeling :/
    Ah well, easy 20% of the course
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by t0ffee)
    Its AS level. You don't even have to cite AFAIK. THere is no copyright on idea. Realisticly you'd expect the 10'000 people or so doing the AS level to say a good deal of the same thing - its not as if you're taught enough or learn enough to do anything particularly insightful or original.
    I think students need to be careful with this mentality.

    Syllabus is a measure of education, not visa versa. The syllabus is not the be-all and end-all: there is no roof so to speak. Therefore (whilst I respect that many, perhaps even the majority of students won't be creating original works) there is nothing stopping you from doing so if you're capable of chasing those top grades.

    When you consider the average grade for English AS is a B/C, it is clear that the majority aren't quite getting it right.

    Go for those citations, go for the originality, go for the footnotes, the detail, the inspiration. Educate yourself not by the minimum requirements, but by the maximum possibilities. Even if the courses don't require it, it will benefit you as a person. Of course, don't attempt this to the detriment of the basics, but keep working above and beyond the expectations.

    Just my two cents.

    Good luck
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Hypedupturtle)
    I think students need to be careful with this mentality.

    Syllabus is a measure of education, not visa versa. The syllabus is not the be-all and end-all: there is no roof so to speak. Therefore (whilst I respect that many, perhaps even the majority of students won't be creating original works) there is nothing stopping you from doing so if you're capable of chasing those top grades.

    When you consider the average grade for English AS is a B/C, it is clear that the majority aren't quite getting it right.

    Go for those citations, go for the originality, go for the footnotes, the detail, the inspiration. Educate yourself not by the minimum requirements, but by the maximum possibilities. Even if the courses don't require it, it will benefit you as a person. Of course, don't attempt this to the detriment of the basics, but keep working above and beyond the expectations.

    Just my two cents.

    Good luck
    There is a complete roof in that word and time limits make it pointless to work outside of the mark scheme.

    If you don't get the uni offers you want or don't meet your uni offers it won't matter how intellectually good and original and insightful your essays were, no one will care.

    By all means, Alevel students should probably read and think more, but assessed essays are not the place to express it.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by t0ffee)
    There is a complete roof in that word and time limits make it pointless to work outside of the mark scheme.

    If you don't get the uni offers you want or don't meet your uni offers it won't matter how intellectually good and original and insightful your essays were, no one will care.

    By all means, Alevel students should probably read and think more, but assessed essays are not the place to express it.
    Every opportunity is a place to express it Certainly, if candidates are unable to include the concepts in the time limits then of course, they need to stick to what they're capable of, but as I said, for those of you chasing top grades, fame and stardom (Oxbridge, Ivy League) every opportunity needs to be taken as a chance to impress on every level, because you should already be getting the top grades easily enough to be able to concert extra energy into pushing the boundaries, not even necessarily for the marker, but also as a test of your own ability.

    Education isn't about grades, mark schemes and university offers - it's about intelligence, wisdom and developing ability. Unfortunately the modern courses tend to distinguish too readily between the two, leading many students to focus exclusively on the prior, whereas the top candidates will strengthen and supplement the latter in order to achieve the former, making them more rounded, able individuals.

    But I sense this is turning into the classic "head/pragmatism/selling yourself vs heart/intuition/innate ability" debate in education so I take my leave.

    Good luck, OP
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Hypedupturtle)
    Every opportunity is a place to express it Certainly, if candidates are unable to include the concepts in the time limits then of course, they need to stick to what they're capable of, but as I said, for those of you chasing top grades, fame and stardom (Oxbridge, Ivy League) every opportunity needs to be taken as a chance to impress on every level, because you should already be getting the top grades easily enough to be able to concert extra energy into pushing the boundaries, not even necessarily for the marker, but also as a test of your own ability.

    Education isn't about grades, mark schemes and university offers - it's about intelligence, wisdom and developing ability. Unfortunately the modern courses tend to distinguish too readily between the two, leading many students to focus exclusively on the prior, whereas the top candidates will strengthen and supplement the latter in order to achieve the former, making them more rounded, able individuals.

    But I sense this is turning into the classic "head/pragmatism/selling yourself vs heart/intuition/innate ability" debate in education so I take my leave.

    Good luck, OP
    Basically, there is education, which is being taught, reading, talking to teachers, thinking, blah blah blah, and then there are tests of your education, in which you should seek to get 100% in, by looking closely at the mark schemes and selecting info from your knowledge and ability to fit the mark scheme.
    • 34 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    If you've used someone else's ideas (regardless of whether they're written word-for-word) you need to reference them. You might well not get caught but it's not worth the risk and you'll need to get used to it at university, because they're much more strict on plagiarism then.

Reply

Submit reply

Register

Thanks for posting! You just need to create an account in order to submit the post
  1. this can't be left blank
    that username has been taken, please choose another Forgotten your password?
  2. this can't be left blank
    this email is already registered. Forgotten your password?
  3. this can't be left blank

    6 characters or longer with both numbers and letters is safer

  4. this can't be left empty
    your full birthday is required
  1. By joining you agree to our Ts and Cs, privacy policy and site rules

  2. Slide to join now Processing…

Updated: May 10, 2012
New on TSR

A-level mocks revision

Chat about your study tips

Article updates
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.