This document provides a brief explanation of plagiarism to increase your awareness and understanding of it. It is hoped that essential facts about plagiarism and its serious consequences will help you to avoid plagiarizing.
I. Plagiarism Defined:
The action or practice of taking someone else's work, idea, etc. and passing it off as one's own; literary theft.
[The Oxford English Dictionary]
II. Revised Iona Policy on ACADEMIC DISHONESTY
Cheating and plagiarism subvert both the purpose of the College and the experience students derive from being at Iona. They are offenses which harm the offender and the students who do not cheat.
The Iona community, therefore, pledges itself to do all in its power to prevent cheating and plagiarism, and to impose impartial sanctions upon those who harm themselves, their fellow students, and the entire community by academic dishonesty.
Sanction and Appeals: At the beginning of each semester, professors shall state their policy with regard to intellectual dishonesty on the syllabi and course requirement forms they distribute. This policy shall include the penalty to be imposed when cheating or plagiarism is discovered; penalties may include failure for a given assignment or failure in the course. Students who are given a failing grade as a result of cheating, plagiarism or academic dishonesty are not permitted to withdraw from the class. Faculty members will report all incidents of cheating and plagiarism to the dean. After the first offense the student will be required to complete an instructional program on intellectual dishonesty. After the second offense, the student will no longer qualify for a degree with honors, and the student may be suspended from the college. In any allegation of intellectual dishonesty, every effort will be made to ensure justice; in all cases, educational assistance rather than adversarial proceedings will be sought.
If, in conformity with this policy, a sanction is imposed, students may appeal first, to the professor who discovered the offence; second to the department chair; and third to the academic dean of the division involved. The decision of the academic dean is final. A student has the right to appeal the academic dean's decision to the provost if, and only if, the sanction involves a suspension from class or dismissal from the College. In such appeals, the decision of the provost is final.
III. Why is Plagiarism Wrong?
Plagiarism is a form of cheating, theft or stealing, and deceit. When you plagiarize, you are:
IV. Examples of Plagiarism
Do not be misled by these common misconceptions:
VI. How to Avoid Plagiarism
Paraphrase correctly and cite your sources:
Cite the source of your information, whether it's from a print source, electronic source or on the Internet, unless it's considered common knowledge. Common knowledge is information that a majority of people either know or can find in a variety of sources, such as historic facts and geographic data. Common knowledge does not need to be cited.
Examples of common knowledge:
VII. Real Examples of Plagiarism outside of Iona
Moorestown, New Jersey, high-school student Blair Hornstine had her admission to Harvard University revoked in July 2003 after she was found to have passed off speeches and writings by famous figures including Bill Clinton as her own original prose in articles she wrote as a student journalist for a local newspaper. » Read More
Senator Joseph Biden was forced to withdraw from the 1988 Democratic Presidential nominations when it was revealed that he had failed a course in law school due to plagiarism. It was also shown that he had copied several campaign speeches, notably those of British Labour leader Neil Kinnock and Senator Robert F. Kennedy. In both cases he was essentially exonerated. » Read More
Two other famous people marring their career with instances of plagiarism were Doris Kearns Goodwin, distinguished author and historian, and author Alex Haley, whose plagiarism cost him over $500,000.
[From Real World Examples - UCSD Libraries, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.]
Unfortunately, one can find many more individuals who have disgraced themselves in their professional lives and careers. The best way to avoid this misfortune is to learn how to write and cite the words and ideas of others properly while in college. It's your responsibility.
More instances can be found at: Accuracy in Media article "Dishonored and Honored Plagiarists".
VIII. Where to get help if you have questions about citing sources and plagiarism
Additional information is available at plagiarismdotORG
– Iona College Libraries, 2011