Sunday, March 25, 2012

Yes I just did this

Dear Professor Monkey,

In your email, you state that I copied my work from that website but I swear I did not see that website before. I went back over my paper and it does reflect some of the course stuff, just maybe not all. I was hoping you could call me to talk this over. Can you be more specific about how you found this plagiarism? Also about the facts I used from the assigned reading I did display this in some of my paper. Can you give me partial credit. I can withdraw from your course or enroll in another university if you don't get it.

Snowy McCrapperton Flakeness

Dear Snowy,
[CC'd to the Dean]

For now, I'd prefer we keep this via email. Let me provide you with a few examples of how identical your paper was to the website I noted in my email. [my verbatim examples redacted, but they were perfect matches]. As you see, your paper is far too similar to these sites for me to give you credit for having done your own work. [Review of plagiarism policy]

It seems like a lot of energy to transfer to another school when I am here, reaching out to you about developing your writing skills. No matter where you get your education, your future employers will expect a college graduate to be able to do her own work and communicate clearly. Running away never solves our problems, but it often makes the situation worse.



(You'll leave if I don't get it? Oh, I get it. Dick.)


  1. Do proffies have any ratcheted recourse on these things? My method would be: you admit to it it's a zero. You don't admit to it it's a zero on that category of your grade. You don't admit to it and then give me shit about it (this post) and I'll fail you for the course and make sure it's noted on your transcript.

    Problem: Solved.

    1. It doesn't matter if the student admits the plagiarism or not; we are perfectly competent at finding and proving plagiarism and in my class, any plagiarism results in a failing grade for the course.

    2. We have university policies and I'm bound by them. I can pass a possible plagiarism case over to the Ministry of Few Consequences, but they determine guilt and penalties. I think this is to avoid vigilante punishment/letting things go, so it feels fair to me.

    3. At least if a student admits it they save some's not about competency in detection. My system would operate much the same way as the criminal justice system where remorse and intent are taken into account.

    4. My university is currently being evaluated by the accreditation folks, so it's really sticking it to the students on plagiarism. Which makes me a winner here, because they would currently rather lose a few students and have the appearance of bringing the standards up.

      As long as I can show parallel sentences from a common source, the student gets written up and receive a 0 F for the assignment. Two offense they fail the class. Three offenses across multiple courses and they are suspended for 6 months. I think it's pretty fair, actually.

  2. AdMonk . . .

    Feel your frustration.
    I've got one in my inbox "I'm retaking this course and reusing previous work so when you see the 99% similarity score, that is why. I took this class with you previously and you graded this assignment highly."

    1) If retaking the course was necessary, might there have been an issue with the quality of your work?
    2) Ah, I DO remember you from the previous class and recall my most common comment was "Feces on flatbread, PLEASE use the Writing Center! Maybe they can help you attain the 8th grade literacy you obviously missed the first time around."

    Also . . figured out SS - by "engineering student" means "engineering for a 'correspondent' gig on Drudge Report by practicing annoying snark here. What real engineering student would have the time to post on every thread?

    1. Not to mention an engineering student who TAs with teaching responsibilities, as our wonder alleges to have...

    2. I didn't feel so much frustrated as empowered. It felt awesome to tell this student that running away is never a good idea.

      And it worked; I got an apology and a promise to double work this morning. Who knows if that holds weight, but the threat became an apology and that's what I wanted. Power. Love it.

  3. Bravo, AM!

    And @A&S: interesting intelligence. Does this mean someone at the Drudge Report is reading CM, or just that SS thinks so?

    1. I believe the latter ...

      The Hubrisinator pegs the needle when SS is around.


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