Dropping the standards…

Written in collaboration with Caroline Fiset-Vincent

In an article published in the Telegraph (Feb. 2017), Camilla Turner explains that a survey conducted in the UK revealed that a third of professors and lecturers think international students « do not have adequate language skills to study at university ». In fact, requirements are lowered which means that academic institutions now admits more and more students who are almost illiterate.

Sixty percent of professors and lecturers also expressed their concerns about plagiarism and cheating saying that they have « caught students cheating at least once, and twenty-eight percent saying that they “regularly suspect” undergraduates of cheating.

Is it really surprising that students who are having difficulties writing and reading resort to plagiarism? Are we doing them a disfavor by admitting them in our universities in the first place when they don’t have what it needs to succeed? And why are we surprised then to have to lower our expectations???

Publicités

« Oui au copier/coller/citer dans l’apprentissage de la rédaction universitaire »

Le 2 juin, Sonia Morin, du Service de soutien à la formation de l’Université de Sherbrooke, a présenté une communication dans le cadre du regroupement sur les stratégies de créacollage numérique. Sa communication examinait le copier/coller/citer lors de la rédaction de travaux universitaires. La notion d’originalité, la reformulation, le patchwriting, le résumé, entre autres, ont été le sujet de la communication. Passionnée, Sonia nous a livré une excellente présentation. Si vous avez le goût de l’écouter ainsi que la période de questions qui a suivi, vous pouvez le faire en cliquant sur le lien suivant: http://adobe.uqac.ca/p2v5fmrnfxl/  .

Bonne écoute!

 

Compromising learning with plagiarism

Would you want a heart surgeon who plagiarized to operate on you? Or have a teacher for your child who cheated while in teacher training? An article in the University World News by Brendan O’Malley (January 2016) exposed the growing number of plagiarism cases in the UK. One executive interviewed was quoted as saying that cheating  « devalues the efforts of students who work hard to achieve their degrees. It also damages the student who commits the fraud as they will not benefit from the research and learning experience« . The finger for the rise in plagiarism is pointed at essay mills and foreign students in the article as the principal culprits. All of the people interviewed explain that cheating is dealt with very seriously in their institutions but nobody mentions what is done to prevent it…

 

 

Vous êtes débordés? Placez une petite annonce sur Kijiji!

On trouve de tout sur Kijiji. Dans les deux derniers jours, j’ai acheté une chaise roulante, magasiné un congélateur et annoncer un appartement à louer. Plusieurs services peuvent également être achetés sur Kijiji. Vous voulez faire déneiger votre entrée, tailler votre haie de cèdres, laver vos vitres ou encore, faire faire vos devoirs! Et oui, certains professionnels offrent leurs services sur Kijiji comme le mentionne Gabrielle Duhaine (La Presse +, 7 novembre 2015). « Nous nous sommes entendus sur un tarif de 240 $, soit 15 $ par page et 15 $ l’heure pour 12 h de lecture et de prise de notes. On nous offrait un rabais de 15 % ». Malheureusement, ce type de service mène directement à du plagiat, à des conséquences graves si l’étudiant se fait prendre. Pourquoi prendre la chance de mettre en péril ses études?

Il vaut mieux continuer de magasiner les objets sur Kijiji et laisser tomber les services. On n’est jamais mieux servi que par soi-même!

 

 

Can plagiarism be explained by competition?

Brigitte Vittrup, in her article Stop Students Who Cheat Before They Become Cheating Professors (Chronicle of Higher Education, avril 2016), explains that competition is one of the reasons why students cheat.  According to Vittrup, we must « interrupt this trajectory of cheating before it moves from the classroom to the professional world« .  It seems that competition is again to blame for cheating professors. The pressure for professors to publish is so strong that those who have cheated as students are driven to do it again because they have gotten away with it. Temptation is strong at all levels…

Plagiarizing your own student…

CBC’s Leo Geoff wrote an article (26th March, 2017) about a professor who plagiarized in one of his article a student’s work. The professor admitted that he was guilty but that the student’s contribution was not significant enough to warrant acknowledgement! Apparently, the professor wrote parts of the student’s thesis…

What a terrible argument to defend your plagiarism! First of all, if there was a contribution from the student, however small it was, it absolutely needs to be recognised. How can we expect students to give their references to the authors whose work they use if we, as professors, don’t reference every author we cite. We need to be models for our students, at all times, not only when it serves our purpose…

And secondly, writing parts of a student’s thesis is very poor pedagogy. I find it very surprising that any professor would have the time or the inclination to write for his student. That is still plagiarism, on the part of both the professor and the student. The first for writing for someone else and the second for passing off someone else’s work as his own!

 

Une vidéo de Noël sur le plagiat

Intéressant comme concept de profiter du temps des fêtes pour parler du plagiat dans une vidéo! Réalisée en 2010 par l’Université de Bergen, il y est question d’un fantôme de Noël, d’humiliation, d’arme secrète, et du développement de compétences. Une bonne façon de passer cinq minutes en mangeant un morceau de tourtière!

P.S. N’oubliez pas de cliquer sur le bouton CC pour avoir les sous-titres!  🙂