In high school and college, plagiarism is on the rise and administrators believe this is bad, immoral and unethical. They believe it is stealing someone else's ideas, their hard work, research, time, and that a student does not learn if they plagiarize. There are several reasons why students choose to use the words and ideas of another rather than to author their own thoughts and words. If everyone were to take a different look at plagiarism, the number of reasons a student plagiarizes could be reduced.
Plagiarism is defined as taking the work or ideas of someone else and passing it off as one's own. If plagiarism were redefined to have two levels of offence and two levels of punishment, this would help teachers, administrators and students. The first level of plagiarism would be called plagiarism in the first-degree and defined as, copying the words and ideas of someone else and passing them off as their own, on purpose, with intent and malice. The punishment would be that the student would get an ˜F' for the paper and fail the class. The second level of plagiarism would be plagiarism in the second-degree. This definition would be that there was no intention to copy someone else