This month's Ok or Not? Poll explores the use of someone else's work as inspiration for one's own work. Given that good research papers have many of the same elements that instructors are looking for, like a well-supported thesis, specific examples, organization and clarity and citations, students often seek good papers of the same topic as inspiration for their own work. Is it ok to use someone else's paper as a guide and copy ideas from it?
Ok or Not? Poll
You use another person's essay as a guide and inspiration for your essay. Ok or Not?
In our last Ok or Not? Poll, we asked: Is it ok to have the majority of the assignment consist of quotes? Kimberly Standifer commented that it is not ok because students should follow the 80/20 rule of 80% of the paper being original and 20% being quoted. While not a hard and fast rule, the 80/20 rule provides a framework for original writing that students can follow in their papers. In some cases however, a researcher may build upon previous work may discuss existing literature at length. At a certain point, it is up to you to discuss with your instructor what is acceptable.
This month's Ok or Not? Poll explores a different issue around the use of your own essay. Given that essay questions can be similar and you may have previous original work on those same ideas, is it ok to submit your own essay or large chunks of it for comparable assignments across your classes? Voice your opinion in this monthly poll.
Ok or Not? Poll
You submit an original essay you wrote for multiple assignments in different classes. Ok or Not?
WriteCheck December 2013 newsletter features the Anatomy of a Well Written Paper, Ask WriteCheck, OK or Not? Poll, and Facebook Content Winners. Plagiarism and Writing Tips.