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Over 1,500 WriteCheck users were surveyed to assess their satisfaction with various features of the service, as well as their reasons for using WriteCheck and the likelihood that they would recommend the product to others.

GRADE IMPROVEMENT

Overall

One of the standout metrics from the survey was the perceived impact of WriteCheck on students’ grade performance. Overall, 52 percent of respondents said the WriteCheck service improved the grade of their paper by half a grade or more, and nearly 10 percent believed the feedback from WriteCheck boosted their grade a full two letter grades.

Regular Users

The statistics among the most frequent users of WriteCheck were equally strong. Among the most frequent users—defined as those who have used WriteCheck six or more times—60 percent said the service has improved their paper’s grade by one half of a grade or more, and 70 percent thought that WriteCheck improved their grade ¼ of a grade up to 3 grades.

Among this specific set of respondents, 68 percent reported maintaining a grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 or higher.

Peace of Mind Users

For people who said their reason for using the service was ‘peace of mind’, 48 percent saw no difference in a grade improvement on their papers, leaving 52 percent to seeing some grade improvement.

Duplication/Self-plagiarism Users

For respondents who cited their reason for using WriteCheck as ‘duplication/self-plagiarism’, a hearty 25% said that it helped improve their results by one whole grade.

Bachelor’s Degree Candidates

Of the 576 respondents who identified themselves as Bachelor’s degree candidates, 30 percent said they saw a one grade higher improvement, and 52 percent reported an improvement of a half of a grade or higher.

TOP REASONS FOR USING WRITECHECK

When asked what the #1 reason for using WriteCheck was, among regular users, defined as those who have used WriteCheck 6-10 times, 13 percent cited their top reasons for using WriteCheck as grammatical concerns, and 26 percent for ethical concerns, namely “paraphrasing.”

While 30 percent of all users surveyed stated their main reason for using WriteCheck was “peace of mind,” the majority of those—66 percent—were repeat users. It’s possible that for some students, WriteCheck provides a routine level of assurance before submitting papers.

SATISFACTION

One of the highest-ranking features of WriteCheck was the “quality of the plagiarism check,” with 82 percent of respondents who have used WriteCheck four or more times “happy” or “very happy” with that aspect of the service. In fact, WriteCheck’s access to the same sources tapped by Turnitin was the single leading reason that 30 percent of those surveyed chose to use the product.

Eighty percent of those users were very satisfied with the product overall, and 82 percent of all of those surveyed ranked the value they got from the service as a 4 out of 5 stars on average on a 5-star rating scale.

AGE GROUPS

The 1,537 respondents were mainly undergraduate or graduate students, and the majority had utilized WriteCheck more than once. The largest single respondent group comprised students ages 25-34 (25 percent). Forty-five percent of respondents were between the ages of 18 and 34, and 40 percent were between the ages of 35 and 54.

DEGREES

The top three degrees respondents said they were working on was: 38 percent (583) Master’s degree, followed by 37 percent (576) Bachelor’s degree, and lastly, 12 percent (184) PhD candidates.

For questions about this survey, please email us.

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Technology

Published on by jessicag.

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Plagiarism in the academic setting has been a growing problem over the past decade. The problem ranges from students copying Internet materials to outright buying term papers from illegal websites.  Overall, an increasing number of students have been completing their coursework the wrong way. For this reason, technologies like Turnitin have evolved over the years to detect duplicate content even as the methods of plagiarism become more advanced.

The latest advancement for plagiarizers is the utilization of language translation software.  Translation software can be an excellent tool to help international students for whom English is a second language (ESL). Ability to speak and write in English is, for the most part, a necessary component in an international academic setting, and most U.S. colleges and universities require test like TOEFL iBT® Test in order to be considered for acceptance.  Unfortunately, plagiarizers can apply such tactics to get around plagiarism detection systems that don’t have the ability to recognize translated materials.

The newest feature from Turnitin has the capacity to detect plagiarism across the boundaries of language. Right now, this new multilingual anti-plagiarism software is able to catch duplicates from Turkish, Swedish, French, Dutch, Spanish, German and Portuguese, with more languages soon to follow. This feature comes as a pure response to market demand; Turnitin had received numerous requests to make such technology available from its loyal client base.

While we can all hope that tools like this will become unnecessary; that at some point students will realize academic integrity speaks not only of their education but also of their ability to perform and be successful in future endeavors. Today, however, teachers at all levels need access to the tools that will help them safeguard the educational process and academic integrity.

Citations

iParadigms LLC via PRNewsWire.  January 11th, 2012.  http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/turnitin-introduces-translated-matching-for-multilingual-plagiarism-detection-137088203.html

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Technology

Published on by davidr.

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Starting today, there is a new feature within WriteCheck -- users can now print ETS® e-rater® feedback from WriteCheck reports.

In August 2011, WriteCheck announced the addition of the ETS® e-rater® grammar checking functionality to help students improve their writing. Now students can take the feedback they receive from ETS® and print it out as a convenient resource to use for finishing their papers.

WriteCheck is continually improving its reports to make it easier to identify areas where students may need to provide proper citation or fix grammar errors. Should you have any suggestions for us, please let us know.

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Technology

Published on by jessicag.

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At first glance, it might seem that the relationship between technology and education is all positive. We now have the technological tools to disseminate knowledge to students across the globe.  No longer limited by geography, a student can learn from some of the best and brightest sources in the world, no matter where they are, as long as there is an Internet connection available. However, there are also disadvantages to technology within the educational sphere, such as the growing rate of plagiarism within educational institutions as well as the argument that technology facilitates learning that isn’t ‘in-depth.’

We’ve seen incredible changes in the world of education during the past decade, primarily due to technology becoming so widely available and affordable. In a sense, information has become democratized.  No matter how far removed a place is, as long as there is Internet access, information of all sorts can be accessed by potential students who are interested in learning.

Technology also provides access to more than just a standard sort of written course materials.  There are highly interactive study programs available online, such as TelePresence in which participants across the globe can interact in real time, as if they were actually sitting in a classroom together. Multimedia tools and other innovative educational technologies have also allowed those with learning disabilities to bridge the gaps they previously faced.

However, there are also negative aspects that have come with the rise of technology, such as students’ ease of access to materials and the constant lure of plagiarism.  Both the modern day technological culture as well as the constant access to the internet has made plagiarism a growing threat to learning intuitions across the globe.

There is also the argument that technology has created a lack of depth in learning; students who are bombarded by technological inputs might be more inclined to skim the surface information on many topics without truly getting an in-depth understanding on any of them.

However, for students truly interested in receiving an education, there is no value in committing plagiarism or skimming through information. Properly citing sources, utilizing solid research methods, and critically thinking through problems are all essential tools of learning.  Students truly interested in learning won’t be satisfied with skimming the surface of topics -- they’ll be the ones to dive in for a deeper understanding.

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Technology

Published on by davidr.

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Ask any college kid across the country if they’re willing to give up technology for a single day and you’re likely to get a resounding no. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter or internet capable smart phones play a major role in the daily lives of the younger generations. So much in fact, that many of them wouldn’t know how to function without the technology that they use to communicate, find information, entertain themselves or shop.

While some of these advancements have enriched lives through access to information and convenience, in many cases, they can be misused. One area that has been the subject of this misuse is in college and university environments. In fact, a recent report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that over half of a sample of college presidents said they noticed a significant increase in plagiarism over the past decade at their schools, and almost all of them said that they think technology has played a role.

A Tech Savvy Generation

What is it about today’s youth that is so different from other generations? Well, for one thing, almost every kid over the age of five knows how to use a computer and it’s even younger for a cell phone. In fact, in many cases, children are outpacing their parents in terms of knowing how to operate and control most technological devices. These are the kids of technology and as technology improves, so does their ability to use it.

Think of the different types of technology you use in an average day. The remote control operates the family television, the digital camera takes pictures and records family events, the computer shares images with our family and friends, even the GPS in the car tells us where to go. It used to be that programming the VCR was the most tech-savvy thing people did at home. Now, things are quite different. The younger generation is technologically savvy and on pace to become more so in the coming years.

The Plagiarism-Technology Link

Just a few years ago, if you needed information you went to the library or you asked a professional. Today, on account of the internet, access to information is immediate. In fact, within a few seconds, you can find almost any piece of data or tidbit of information by simply entering a search query into Google. The internet has opened the door to a whole new world of possibilities from online businesses to reconnecting with friends to research to entertainment. As a tool for virtually anything, the internet’s volume of data is endless.

Unfortunately, for college students, the temptation to use technology for shortcuts is very high. Not only is it easy to plagiarize by simply cutting and pasting, but it’s also easy to purchase fully written papers, reports, even PhD dissertations. In fact, for a small fee students can buy and download a professional college ready paper on virtually any subject. There are sites dedicated to nothing but providing academic papers to the next kid with a debit card. On many college campuses, the internet has changed from a tool for gathering information to one for stealing & buying information.

Two Pew Research Center surveys discovered the impact of technology on college behavior. The first survey was conducted by telephone, reaching out to a sample of over 2,000 adults over the age of 18. The second survey was conducted online, targeting the presidents of over 1,000 colleges and universities.

Over half of college graduates surveyed stated that they used some form of technology in class. For the presidents, almost all said that they use a smartphone daily, over a third reported that they use social networking sites weekly, and more than half work for universities that offer online courses. Interestingly, over 60% anticipate that sometime in the next ten years, more than half of the textbooks used in traditional courses will be digital.

Obviously, technology is not going anywhere anytime soon. This is generally considered to be a good thing, as the internet, smart phones, social media etc., have made life easier and in many cases, more entertaining. However, as a tool for promoting plagiarism, the internet simply provides too much freedom with too little regulation. College students are dependent on technology to function efficiently at the same level as their peers. Nevertheless, as technology becomes easier and more accessible, so does the temptation to be lazy and plagiarize work. Solutions need to be found both by using technology to support current peer review processes along with providing students with a proper guided framework of research and writing integrity.

Citations

TechNewsDaily Staff.  “College Presidents Blame Rising Plagiarism on Tech Increase.” September 16th, 2011. http://www.technewsdaily.com/college-paper-plagiarism-rising-3256/

Categories

Technology

Published on by davidr.

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