About this paper

Appears in:
Page: 6549 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-608-5617-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2016.0546

Conference name: 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2016
Location: Valencia, Spain


N. Saba 'Ayon

Rafik Hariri University (LEBANON)
Academicians consider plagiarism a major threat to academia. In fact, Baker, Thornton, and Adams (2008:1), citing Koch (2000), state that about “75 percent of university students have violated academic integrity rules during their educational careers, many of them do so consistently.” To combat that threat, a lot of universities, including the researcher’s university, are using Turnitin, a plagiarism detecting software. It is believed that such software is likely to deter students’ plagiarism. Based on the literature, Turnitin has been effective in reducing plagiarism in students’ writing assignments (www.turnitin.com; Batane, 2010; Baker, Thornton, & Adams, 2008 among others). Several factors were also found to contribute to students’ plagiarism such as lack of awareness, laziness, lack of skills in academic writing, lack of understanding, personal attitudes, and unpunished students’ plagiarism acts (Batane, 2010; Baker, Thornton, & Adams, 2008; Smith, Ghazali, & Minhad, 2007). Although Turnitin has been used at the researcher’s university for almost 6 years, the researcher is still encountering acts of students’ plagiarism in almost every class she teaches. Therefore, to determine the effectiveness of this software in fighting plagiarism at her university , the researcher aims to examine the impact of Turnitin on students’ plagiarizing behavior from the perspectives of both the students and the faculty members at the university. In order to get a better understanding of these perspectives, the reasons that push students to plagiarize are also examined. The researcher employs the concurrent mixed methods design whereby both quantitative and qualitative data collection are happening at the same time of the research study. The researcher uses different data collection methods, namely a self-completion questionnaire and semi-structured interviews. A sample of 150 student participants is purposively selected to survey their perceptions of Turnitin, their attitudes toward plagiarism, and their views of the factors that push students to plagiarize. In addition, six faculty members selected from the different colleges at the university are interviewed about their experiences using Turnitin, their perceptions of the software, their attitudes toward students’ plagiarism, and the factors they perceive to lead to students’ plagiarizing behavior. The collected data are analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively, and the conclusions derived from the different analyses of the multi- sourced data are compared. Preliminary findings reveal that a lot of the participants (students and faculty members) perceive Turnitin as a good deterrent to plagiarism. The number of plagiarized assignments has also decreased. Some of the reasons for plagiarism that the participants have named are lack of citation skills, laziness, and indifference among students to abide by ethical writing norms. Most importantly, the findings reveal that the use of Turnitin has not been enforced by all faculty members at the univesity. Besides reinforcing the use of Turnitin among all faculty members, the researcher recommends that students’ writing and citing skills be improved and that students be helped become more ethical writers.
author = {Saba 'Ayon, N.},
series = {10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2016 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-5617-7},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2016.0546},
url = {https://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2016.0546},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {6549}}
AU - N. Saba 'Ayon
SN - 978-84-608-5617-7/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2016.0546
PY - 2016
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2016
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2016 Proceedings
SP - 6549
EP - 6549
ER -
N. Saba 'Ayon (2016) TURNITIN: DOES IT DETER STUDENTS’ PLAGIARISM?, INTED2016 Proceedings, p. 6549.