Plagiarism In A Personal Statement

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Although misrepresenting a source’s information is not as serious an ethical issue as plagiarism, it is still unacceptable in college writing.Each incoming Personal Statement is compared against a library of personal statements already in the UCAS system, and a library of sample statements collected from a variety of websites and other sources, including paper publications.After it has been processed, each new personal statement is added to the library.Furthermore, plagiarism makes it impossible for readers to investigate the writer’s sources on their own.There are two broad categories of plagiarism: Ideas in the public domain, which are considered common knowledge, can be mentioned without citation, provided that the language of the original document is not plagiarized in any way.It might be tempting to “borrow” a template from a website and change a few of the details, but with UCAS’s Big Brother-esque “Similarity Detection Service”, it will still get flagged up as plagiarism.UCAS run all statements through a programme that checks them against a library of previous personal statements (so no adapting your big sister’s), sample statements from websites and a huge trove of other publications.Because plagiarism presents another’s work as one’s own, it is unethical and dishonest and is therefore prohibited by the University of Lynchburg Honor Code.It also denies one’s work the benefit that comes from citing authoritative sources that lend credibility to what one is saying.It is accepted that students are likely to compare Statements with peers, which may also lead to some similarity in content.In addition, many schools and colleges provide help and advice to students, sometimes in the form of Personal Statement templates, which may inadvertently lead to their Statements being picked up by the Similarity Detection Service.

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