How to Check a Custom Essay for Plagiarism
Not only is plagiarism, the deliberate stealing of exact words or ideas of another author and claiming it as one’s own work, an unacceptable act of academic dishonesty, it can have tremendous consequences as well. Unfortunately, with the prevalent use of electronics and the internet, plagiarism has only been made easier. Whether it’s an analysis of a literary work, a scientific research write-up, or a thesis paper, it’s important to check essays for academic integrity, and there are a few tactics you can utilize for doing so. All you have to do is ask yourself some simple questions:
- Are the same words or phrases repeatedly popping up?
If you find a suspicious phrase in an essay, copy and paste it onto a search engine. If a match is found, there could be a strong probability that the essay is plagiarized. You may want to talk to the writer of the essay in person to see if the writer’s knowledge of the subject matter is as comprehensive as the content of the essay. At that point, you should be able to tell if your fears have been realized.
- Are there proper citations throughout the essay?
If footnotes, quotations or sources are poorly cited or are entirely absent, it could be strong evidence that the writer is attempting to pass off the work as his or her own. You should also research the citations the writer gave. Are the citations not on the same topic as the essay? Are the citations even real?
- What patterns are evident?
If students turn in essays that share the same organization or words should leave you doubtful. Call the suspicious students into a private meeting to discuss the similarities between their essays. Often times you’ll need more evidence than just similar patterns between essays, but if plagiarism is happening you can’t let it continue.
And if you know the writer of the essay, has this writer previously exhibited poor grammar and spelling skills, but now presents a grammatically correct essay? Is this essay more comprehensive than previous work from this writer?
If the answer is yes these questions, that doesn’t necessarily mean the essay has been plagiarized, as the student may have just improved, but you may want to double check the essay asking yourself the same questions as above.
There are also several “plagiarism-detector” sites that you can visit and check for potential plagiarisms between essays and sites. Plagiarism is still at large in the academic world, and not dealing with it means it will only get worse. Taking the time to ask yourself (and answer) the above questions when reading through an essay will be a tremendous help in checking if an essay has been plagiarized.