It’s the night before your big paper is due, and your friends want you to go out with them. Do you:
a) Download a pre-written paper off the net.
b) Pull an all-nighter and get it done.
c) Ignore it, and beg your teacher for an extension.
d) Call up your brother and ask for one of his old papers.
e) Pay your roomie to write it for you.
If you choose b, good for you! You’ll be tired but at least you won’t find yourself kicked out of school, and hey, you might even pull off a decent grade.
If you chose a,d, or e, and you might find yourself in some hot water. Plagiarism is a very serious issue, and not one that colleges take lightly. You could receive an automatic failing grade, or even be kicked out school altogether.
If you chose c, it’s a better choice than a, d, or e, but still not very wise. While you might think your instructor is dumb as a rock, they are on to your slick ways. They may or may not give you an extension. Is it worth risking your grade to find out?
Now that you’ve taken my fun little quiz, let’s delve into this topic a little more. If you turn in a paper that was not written by you, either in part or in its entirety, you run the risk of facing some very serious consequences if caught. I know I’m probably preaching to the choir here, but it’s worth repeating.
If you get caught, many schools have the policy that you will automatically fail that course. If you’re shooting for a good GPA, that can put a dent in it, and if the class you’re taking is for a degree requirement, having to take it all over again can really throw off your schedule, and sometimes even graduation. What would suck even more is if the class is only taught by one teacher, which means when you take it again you’ll be taking it with the same teacher. If that’s the case, don’t expect to have a fun time.
Other schools are much less lenient when it comes to plagiarism, and won’t hesitate to kick you to the curb. You might get asked to leave indefinitely, or for a semester or two. If you’re lucky, you’ll be on probation for a couple semesters.
So, be wise. Don’t plagiarism. It gives a bad name to all of us, and you can really screw up your academic career and reputation doing it. Instructors have software and websites that they can use to check whether your paper has been copied. They might be older, but they certainly aren’t dumb.