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For this exercise you will discuss your own personal understanding of plagiarism and how you safeguard against plagiarizing by taking personal responsibility in your research and composition work.

Plagiarism is defined as follows by Henry Campbell Black in Black’s Law Dictionary, West Publishing Company, St. Paul Minnesota, 1968 (p. 1308): “The act of appropriating the literary composition of another, or parts or passages of his writings, or the ideas or language of the same, and passing them off as the product of one’s own mind.”
Moreover, to be liable for ‘plagiarism’ it is not necessary to exactly duplicate another’s literary work, it being sufficient if unfair use of such work is made by lifting of substantial portion thereof, but even an exact counterpart of another’s work does not constitute ‘plagiarism’ if such counterpart was arrived at independently (O’Rouke vs. RKO Radio Pictures, D. C, Mass., 44F. Supp. 480, 482, 483).

In a short essay of 250-300 words, discuss your personal and ethical response to the following question:

What constitutes plagiarism and how do you guard against possible plagiarism in your own college composition work? In other words: How do you personally take responsibility for your own actions in regards to your personal values concerning plagiarism?

Discussion Facilitation / Helpful Tips and Questions:

Have you ever been told that you plagiarized? Did you know that you had done it?
What’s so wrong with plagiarism, anyway?
Do you like working hard on something and then having someone else take credit for it?
Are you learning when you are only copying material?
Is plagiarism against your ethical values?
Can you plagiarize yourself?
How would you feel if someone plagiarized your work?
Should all teachers put their students’ homework, writing, essays, etc. through plagiarism software?
How can we prevent plagiarism?

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