Ethics: The Case of the Plagiarized Paragraph
To prepare for this assignment, please read Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct and “Journalism’s Summer of Sin Marked by Plagiarism, Fabrication, Obfuscation”. Finally, review Instructor Guidance and Announcements.
The American Psychological Association has adopted a code of ethics, the Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct. In addition to governing the behavior of professionals, the five general principles and ten specific ethical standards contained in this code of ethics extend to all those who study or practice psychology. In academia, perhaps the most relevant ethical breach occurs in the context of plagiarism, which involves taking credit for someone else’s work (thoughts, words, etc.). Unfortunately, this practice can and does occasionally occur outside the classroom too (See the chronology in “Journalism’s Summer of Sin Marked by Plagiarism, Fabrication, Obfuscation”). Although most people recognize word-for-word copy and paste presentation of work constitutes an act of dishonesty, a variety of additional practices may be construed as plagiarism as well. Review “The plagiarism spectrum: Tagging 10 types of unoriginal work ” and watch the video “Plagiarism 2.0: Information Ethics in the Digital Age”.
A common mistake concerning ethics is the application of paraphrasing. When a writer, researcher, or student paraphrases, (s)he is expressing the meaning of what (s)he has read using his or her own words. It is an especially important skill for students to acquire. With accurately applied and properly cited paraphrasing, students and other writers can avoid the consequences of plagiarism. Learning how to paraphrase correctly can also help one avoid the appearance of presenting a series of direct quotes. This important skill builder is designed to help you achieve success in this area throughout your academic experience, as well as in your current and future careers.
Thus, in this activity, you will apply ethical considerations by relating course content to a realistic scenario.
- First, locate a scholarly article in the Ashford Library. This source can be on any topic you choose. You may wish to utilize recommended articles for this course, or you may instead locate an article that includes information that aligns with your own interests.
- Next, copy and paste either the abstract or one paragraph from the body of your selected article into your paper with the heading “Original Work”.
- Then, write a paragraph in which you paraphrase under the heading “Paraphrased Paragraph”.
- Then, reflect on this topic using your own academic voice and applying in-text citations. Relate your thoughts under the heading “Reflection”. In your reflection (4-5 paragraphs), address the following:
- Illustrate how plagiarism, even when unattended, violates the ethical responsibility of a psychology student or professional.
- Predict potential consequences to other persons (e.g., research participants, patients, clients, students, etc.) when this violation occurs.
- Apply this knowledge to your own personal area of interest as identified in the Introduction Discussion. What additional ethical concerns are or will be especially relevant to you given your aspirations?
- Must be at least two to three double-spaced pages in length (not including title and references pages) and formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must include a separate title page (APA style) that includes the following:
- A header
- Title of paper
- Student’s name
- Course name and number
- Instructor’s name
- Date submitted
- Must begin with an introductory paragraph that has a succinct thesis statement.
- Must utilize academic voice.
- Must paraphrase material, avoiding direct quotes.
- For more information about how to synthesize your writing, please visit the Ashford Writing Center.
- Must address the topic with critical thought.
- Must end with a conclusion that reaffirms the thesis.
- Must use, at minimum, the APA Code of Ethics and the chosen article as sources. Additional scholarly sources are encouraged. Be sure to integrate your research smoothly rather than simply inserting it.
- The Scholarly, Peer Reviewed, and Other Credible Sources table offers additional guidance on appropriate source types. If you have questions about whether a specific source is appropriate for this assignment, please contact your instructor. Your instructor has the final say about the appropriateness of a specific source for a particular assignment.
- Must document all sources in APA style as outlined here and here
- Must include a separate reference page that is formatted according to APA style.
- Must be submitted to Grammarly for review and correction prior to submitting.