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How to Recognize Plagiarism

Paraphrasing

Example 2 of 5

Paraphrasing plagiarism is committed when a writer summarizes an idea taken from another source and fails both to cite the author(s) and to provide the corresponding reference.

If the summary contains a sequence of 7 or more words taken from that source which is not properly acknowledged, then word-for-word plagiarism is also committed.

Read the example carefully!

Original Source Material:  During the last decade, there has been a shift from "instructivist" approaches towards "constructivist" approaches in the field of instructional design. Instructivist approaches reflect the belief that the role of knowledge is basically to represent the real world. Meaning is eventually determined by this real world and [is] thus external to the understander. Source: Merriënboer, J. J. van. (1997). Training complex cognitive skills. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications.
Plagiarized Version Correct Version

Over the last ten years, there has been a marked change from "instructivist" points of view to "constructivist" points of view among instructional designers. Instructivist points of view hold the belief that the role of knowledge is fundamentally to represent the real world. In this view, meaning is determined by the real world and is therefore external to the learner.

Reference:

Merriënboer, J. J. van. (1997). Training complex cognitive skills. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications.

Instructivists hold that the "real world," external to individuals, can be represented as knowledge and determines what will be understood by individuals. This view has been shifting to a constructivist view over the past decade (van Merriënboer, 1997).

Reference:

Merriënboer, J. J. van. (1997). Training complex cognitive skills. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications.

Explanation: This is paraphrasing plagiarism. The student has substituted synonyms for many words in the passage, but has not changed the structure of the text. He or she has used another person's ideas without crediting that person. Although a reference is provided, there is no in-text citation to link the paraphrase to the specific reference.

Note that student's text, "the belief that the role of knowledge is" ... "to represent the real world" is also word-for-word plagiarism.

If this kind of example is on a Certification test, it should be identified as word-for-word plagiarism, because it contains both kinds.

Explanation: This example has been paraphrased properly, and the original author has been credited for those ideas. The student has cited the source of the ideas appropriately, and provided the corresponding reference.

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