Addressing Plagiarism: How to Reduce Occurrences in a Computing Curriculum Through Targeted Assessment

Brief Paper (Asynchronous) ID: 62205
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    Michael Jonas
    University of New Hampshire at Manchester

Abstract: Plagiarism is a problem in any discipline. In computing, it manifests itself in copying code, either in part, or as a whole. Reducing its occurrence can be done through strict disciplinary means, though that may not be an effective deterrence. Another model puts the focus on testing, but can come at the cost of reducing the valuable experience students gain from project work. It can also sometimes be difficult to detect every infraction. A better approach is to incentivize students to do their own work to learn the material, and many techniques have been studied. This paper explores targeted assessment, a method of asking specific questions on submitted work that is part of the assignment submission. This helps guide students to better understand the material they claim as their own. It also creates a more positive environment that reduces the stress on both faculty and students who do their own work, since plagiarism instances tend to have a broader impact.


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