Workshops preach against plagiarism
To educate and enlighten students about the importance of academic integrity, Bowdoin College implemented a week long program to familiarize first-years with academic honesty issues. The Academic Honesty Workshop, created after lengthy discussions between students and faculty, taught first-years about plagiarism, source citing, and the consequences of failing to comply with such rules. The goal was to raise awareness, cure misconceptions, and ultimately, end violations of the Honor Code.
Often, plagiarism arises as a result of ignorance. The designers of the Code felt that there was an urgent need to educate new students about the importance of source citing, among other issues. The use of the electronic classroom, as well as the collaboration between participating faculty members and librarians, created an interactive environment for all first-years, facilitating discourse between staff and students. "I think that these workshops will have a substantial impact on the Bowdoin Community," commented senior Sydney Asbury, student chair of the J-Board.
"The more that issues of academic honesty are discussed, the more thoughtful students will be in doing their own work," agreed Jesse McCree '06. "If the goal was to make people wary of plagiarism, then I think the workshops were successful. It certainly taught me how easy it is to plagiarize unintentionally."
Professor Elizabeth Muther, a faculty participant representing the English department, emphasized that the workshops are "something that we have added to the Bowdoin students' education."
Concerning the longer lasting impacts of the workshops, she stated that this knowledge can and will be used "here and beyond." In the future, the academic honesty will no longer be limited only to first-years. In the works are plans for an online tutorial where all students can gain access to the same information.