Plagiarism Checker Mindshift

the pilot p-500

Just had a quick discussion with a colleague today that was one of those “Why didn’t I think of that?” moments.  He was discussing a recent research paper he had his students working on about the causes of the American Revolution.  He had a student turn in an essay that was pretty obviously plagiarized due to the inclusion of the word “confluence” by an 8th grader.  The Great Plagiarism Mindshift began by him explaining he used the essay in class to show how easy it was to check for plagiarism.  Very informative lesson for students, though one I’m pretty sure they’ve seen in the past.

The real Mindshift occurred when he said “So after that I just posted the link on my webpage and told them it would be there for them to use themselves next time.”

Whoa…

If a tool like The Plagiarism Checker was great for teachers before, how much better is it now?  If a student modifies something they find enough that The Plagiarism Checker can’t find where it came from, then it’s certainly not plagiarism right?  What an amazing use of a tool ordinarily available for the purpose of “busting” students.

By the way, the site he’s using is available for free, here.

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