Plagiarism Exercise

 

Use this little test to see if you can recognize plagiarism.  After you have all taken the test, you should have a better idea of what plagiarism is and how to avoid it in your writing. There are many more plagiarism resources at your disposal (library, web, etc.), and you should refer to these to the extent that you are sure you know how to avoid plagiarism.

 

Suppose your class has been assigned to read four published articles about the feasibility of a manned trip to Mars. After having read the articles, each student is required to write short paper on the subject.  Here is the list of articles, followed by the final paragraph from the article by Brown (1997):

[Note -- These articles are ficticious and are for this exercise only.]

 

 

Published articles assigned to be read:

 

(1) Abercrombie, A.J. and Fitch, R.C., 1992, Unmanned planetary missions in the 21st century.  NASA website; accessed January, 2001. www.nasa.gov/mars/missions/missions.html

 

(2) Arthur, C.A., Clinton, W.J., and Kennedy, J.F., 1994, Planning a manned mission to Mars.  Proceedings of the 14th Lunar Conference, Lunar Planetary Institute, San Diego, CA, pp. 122-134.

 

(3) Brown, Katherine N., 1997, Mars and man: A union whose time has come.  Icarus, vol. 45, pp. 227-243.

 

(4) The case for a manned mission to Mars.  NASA website, accessed February, 2001;      www.nasa.gov/mars/missions/manned.html

 

Brown's (1997) final paragraph:

During the 1960s the nation put human beings into space and eventually sent them to the moon and back.  History has recorded this effort not only as an enormous technological achievement but also as an example of Americans’ ability to cooperate to achieve a national goal.  Getting to the moon was important, but the real frontier has always been Mars.  If we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, we will be affording the human race the opportunity to realize an ancient dream.  The technology necessary to accomplish this already exists; all we need now is the will to go.

 


 

Use these definitions of "plagiarize" from Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary, 1977, p. 877:

  •  "to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own"
  • "use (a created production) without crediting the source"
  • "present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source"
  • "to commit literary theft"


The following sentences were taken from several student papers and deal with the same ideas that Brown (1997) presented in her final paragraph. Your job is to decide whether any of the students has plagiarized Brown's paper.

 

[Barbara]

Brown (1997) argued, “If we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, we will be affording the human race the opportunity to realize an ancient dream.”

          Plagiarism ?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Talisha]

K.N. Brown stated, “If we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, we will be affording the human race the opportunity to realize an ancient dream.” (3)

          Plagiarism ?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Vijay]

Brown (1997) thinks that a manned Mars mission this decade will give people a worthwhile goal to achieve.

          Plagiarism?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Eduardo]

Brown thinks that “[i]f we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010...,” people will have a worthwhile goal to achieve (3).

          Plagiarism?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Maria]

Brown (1997) thinks that if we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, people will have a worthwhile goal to achieve.

          Plagiarism?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Kevin]

“If we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, we will be affording the human race the opportunity to fulfill an ancient dream.”

          Plagiarism ?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Amanda]

If we declare our intention to send a man to Mars before 2010, we will be affording the human race the opportunity to fulfill an ancient dream.

          Plagiarism ?? click here for the answer

 

 

[Melanie]

A manned Mars mission this decade will give people a worthwhile goal to achieve.

          Plagiarism ?? click here for the answer