Of Plagiarism And Academic Honesty

By: Abdulrasheed Akere

Plagiarism connotes the act of using another person’s ideas, words, opinions, texts or other creative works, and presenting it as one’s original work without giving credit to the original owner. Contrastingly, academic honesty can be qualify as direct opposite of plagiarism whereby one person take permission before copying or using another person’s context from the legal owner.

Plagiarism is said to be an offensive act under the law which attracted a certain fine for it illegal virtue in academic settings. Normally, as a knowledgeable academician, it is a right to acknowledge people for using their works to work out your ones work. Also, plagiarism is a violation of academic honesty that is impolite, wrong and can be regarded as dishonesty to academic culture.

Historically, plagiarism can be said to predate citation in history as it firstly erupted in the year 1601 during the Jacobean era. As at now, the rate of plagiarism is numerous than someone’s imagination. Despite its illegality with popularity, enormous students still fall victim of it seasonally, we can say it as a result of inability of those culprits to think rightly on their own or they are naturally intrinsic with literary theft.

Whereas, to avert plagiarism in academic field, some scholars, writes and authors registered their works both literary and artistic works under copyright so as to secure right by the law to be the only entity which determines who may publish, copy and distribute their works. It is no more a plagiarism if new writers regulate the copyright rule and offer credit to their sources of ideas either it’s in book, magazine or online media.

Academic field is a complex and wide mainstream of studies which encompasses character and learning; honesty is one of the major upright characters which a responsible person is expected to exhibit. Therefore, if prospective writers, researchers and authors want to respect the sanctity of academics, they must be honest in their academic endeavors and abstain from plagiarism.

In fact, it is necessary for writer to state bibliography, pen down citation, and provide reference of their sources so as to serve as acknowledgment and appreciation to the original writers either demise or alive scholars for their contributions to academic evolvement and development. Actually, some people especially student researchers are found guilty of literary theft known as plagiarism unintentionally. In the sense that they plagiarized mistakenly or out of known, regardless of this innocence they will still face penalty for plagiarizing because ignorance is not an excuse before the law.

However, publishing of articles, write-ups, artistic stories about the effect of plagiarism both in newspapers and online will go a long way to correct the illicit act by acquainting people of its consequences. To curtail the spreading of viral plagiarism in tertiary institutions and other sectors, every individual is entitle to help the situation in one way or the other by aiding the embracement of academic honesty. Organizing of academic workshops, seminars or webinars to educate the general public on what plagiarism is all about, its procedures, its consequences and measures to be free from it will be a great initiative and innovative that will reduce the rate of plagiarism in high schools and colleges.

The intent of some students who ventured into plagiarism is because they want to be identify as the writer or author of a particular flawless article, speech or research project, so they went extra mile to copy great scholars works so as to make their work great as well. This well-known felonious, illegitimate and unlawful deed has no good outcome than to sabotage the reputation of whosoever fall its victim regardless of the person’s position or status in the society.

Meanwhile, academic honesty make one to be proud of his work and able to defend it anytime that the need arise. What is the essence of work that one write decently, but cannot defend it due to plagiarism. It is even a waste of time, energy, efforts and money for student researchers that their work is discarded for being guilty of plagiarism. It is advisable for students, especially those writing their final year project to stay away from plagiarism by writing their works by themselves, if that is ardous to do and it requires them to use other people’s ideas, so citation should be done properly and writing of bibliography is also an option so as to make their works a honest one.

A lot of people had lost their good names like professors, doctors to plagiarism because of the indecency in the act. In summary, everyone is expected to be honest in attitudes and display academic honesty.

About the writer: Abdulrasheed Akere is a sophomore student at Usmanu Danfodiyo University Sokoto (UDUS), he can be reached via abdulrasheedabdulkareem01@gmail.com.

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