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In their own words : a qualitative study of the reasons Australian university students plagiarise
journal contributionposted on 2007-01-01, 00:00 authored by Marcia Devlin, K Gray
The ways in which universities and individual academics attempt to deter and respond to student plagiarism may be based on untested assumptions about particular or primary reasons for this behaviour. Using a series of group interviews, this qualitative study gathered the views of 56 Australian university students on the possible reasons for plagiarism within their institution. The results indicate a wide and disparate range of possible contributing reasons for plagiarism, including: institutional admission criteria; student understanding of plagiarism; poor academic skills; a range of teaching and learning factors; personality factors; and external pressures. These findings are compared with other findings about reasons for student plagiarism in Australasia. The implications of these findings are considered for universities and individual academics seeking to better engage with their students to minimize or marginalize plagiarism.