This week I participated in turnitin.com’s third annual Plagiarism Education Week. The week consisted of a number of webcasts in which experts addressed various issues related to plagiarism. You can go check out all of the recorded sessions FOR FREE at http://turnitin.com/en_us/resources/webcasts.
For me the two best webcasts were “Changing Culture to Promote Integrity” and “Wikipedia in the Classroom.” “Changing Culture to Promote Integrity” highlighted how the culture our students live in leads to an inability to see cheating as a serious issue. The presenter, Dr. David Callahan, discussed cheating epidemics, the social structures that seem to encourage cheating, and how to help students realize that cheating is never the right thing to do. His argument that schools must take cheating seriously and create structures to deter cheating is an important point for all educators and administrators to realize. “Wikipedia in the Classroom” was given by LiAnna Davis, a representative of the Wiki Education Foundation. Her presentation showed how Wikipedia might be utilized by teachers in their classrooms. I can’t tell you how many times I have told my students not to use Wikipedia in their papers. This is almost always followed by a collective, nasally “WHY NOT?” LiAnna Davis’s presentation gave me great ideas on how to use Wikipedia—a real life application of their projects—when I teach my students how to write research papers. It was really great.
These two presentations are only two of the eight webcasts that you can watch. Each webcast is forty-five minutes long. Give up a prep period here or there over the next few weeks to watch these videos, and, I promise you, you will not regret it.