Faculty Perceptions of Plagiarism: Insight for Librarians' Information Literacy Programs

Russell Michalak, Monica Rysavy, Kevin Hunt, Bernice Smith, Joel Worden


Using a survey modified from The Plagiarism Handbook (Harris, 2001, p. 39), the research team surveyed all undergraduate and graduate faculty (n=79) teaching during the Fall 2016 semester at a small private college in the United States. With a final survey response rate of 59.5% (n=47), the researchers learned that while the faculty's definitions of plagiarism fluctuated, overall faculty definitions paralleled the official definition of plagiarism at this institution. Furthermore, the researchers learned that the vast majority of faculty, 74% (n=35), do not currently invite library staff into their classrooms to teach students how to avoid plagiarism. Given this finding, this study indicates that there was an opportunity for librarians to collaborate with faculty to develop new information literacy and plagiarism deterrent resources. These were intended to support faculty teaching and to additionally market the existing online information literacy training modules, previously developed as part of the authors’ Information Literacy Assessment (ILA) program.

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Copyright Russell Michalak, Monica Rysavy, Kevin Hunt, Bernice Smith, Joel Worden

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