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LHS now subscribes to Turnitin.com in an effort to help our students recognize plagiarism and learn to correctly cite sources they use in their writing. For students to be able to use the service, teachers need to enroll their class names and assignments. Then students need to enroll themselves in the classes to submit their work.
With so many resources available to students on the internet, we need to teach our students to use them ethically. Most students don’t intentionally plagiarize; they may not know how to cite correctly or they may not know your expectations. We need to be sure they understand what has to be cited, how to cite it, and why it is important to cite sources.
If we’ve done that well, using Turnitin.com becomes a learning experience for us and for our students.
1. Let your students know your expectation for ethical use.
- a. Why is ethical use important?
b. What do your students already know about plagiarism?
c. How much group work is acceptable or is this strictly individual?
d. What instruction might be helpful for you or for your students?
e. What are the resources students have to write citations correctly?
2. Structure your assignment to require a Works Cited page.
- a. Write a good prompt or essential question making it clear you want the students’ analysis, not the expert’s thinking.
b. Will you require note cards?
c. Do you want to set up a “turn-in folder” on the server so you have access to student work after the due date?
d. What are your requirements for citing those works?
e. How will your students and you know they have submitted their work and made the corrections? In other words, if it is the students’ responsibility, how will you know they did it without you having to resubmit the work?
3. Due date for the assignment.
- a. You should set up your assignment far enough in advance for students to submit their work, receive the report and make changes.
b. Do you want students to be able to submit work after the due date?
4. What should you do if you suspect plagiarism?
- a. Ask for documentation—printed information from the sources, note cards, rough drafts, etc.
b. Check with other teachers to familiarize yourself with the student’s work.
c. Submit the work yourself.
d. Meet with your department chair, the grade level administrator and or the counselor to discuss your suspicions and the next steps.