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Plagiarism and Programming: How to Code without Plagiarizing

December 19, 2019 No Comments

Featured article by Lisa Heard, Independent Technology Author

Plagiarism is fast becoming a concern among computer science students. In the recent past, tech-based courses have become popular in the university, with more and more students applying for it. As the number of programming students increases, plagiarism in coding has slowly become a norm.

Programming is still a new language under constant development. This poses a challenge to students since it does not have a fully developed standard of communication that guides one on how to cite other people’s work. It is why most students at the university are struggling with plagiarism in coding.


Spread of Plagiarism in Code and How Best to Avoid it in your Own Code

As a computer scientist, you need to do a lot of research on plagiarism in coding and how best to avoid it. This will help you come across some of the best code similarity checker tools as well as essays in tips on how to copy and paste without plagiarizing.

Doing so helps you as a student, learn what plagiarism is and how to best avoid it. Here are some useful tips on how to avoid this academic misconduct in your work.

1.Learn when to use outside code

The US education system allows learners to use outside code when learning to program. However, there are rules that you need to follow when including outside code in your assignment. Understanding the rules that regulate the use of other people’s work in programming is the best way to avoid plagiarism in computer science assignments.

2.Look for programming plagiarism checker tools online

Free online plagiarism checker tools are very useful when you have to look for plagiarism in essays and research papers. Websites like provide students with a free tool to find copied and uncited work in their papers. As a student, you also need to find efficient online tools for checking plagiarism in your code. 

3.Understand the rules on collaboration

A code plagiarism checker might find your work clean and original, but your instructor still finds you guilty of cheating simply by collaborating with another student. Therefore, you need to know when and how to collaborate with other students in a project without it being considered cheating. You can even use a free code similarity checker tool to be on the safe side.

4.Learn the limitations of using outside code

With a programing language detector, your instructor can tell where you got all your code from. Students are only allowed to use outside code from approved sources and open source projects for their academic purpose. It is just like writing an essay or a research paper; you must use accurate and trustworthy sources.

5.Consult with your instructor or supervisor

When working on a computer science project, always consult with your instructor every step of the way. This ensures that you get the guidance you need to see the task through without issues. Your tutor will guide you on how to approach the task and how to make sure it is perfect in the long run.

6.Learn to comment on your code

Regardless of the language, you are using in your code, there is a way you can add comments in your work. It is like leaving behind a guide for your supervisor on what is original and what is borrowed. This helps avoid plagiarism since you acknowledge that you have borrowed some code from outside sources. It is allowed.

7.Separate your original work from copied work

When preparing a code, you must separate your original work from that which you have borrowed from other sources. It makes it easy to cite the borrowed work in your project. With a programming language detector, your supervisor will always check and detect copied work in your project. What will they find?

8.Embrace creativeness and trust your gut

Programming is all about creativity and exploration. Therefore, you need to brainstorm and come up with original, unique code. This way, you will not worry about your work being taken through a code plagiarism checker since you know it unique.

Final Remarks

Programming is becoming very popular in today’s education. Many students are opting for technological courses like software engineering and computer science. Therefore, rules and standards on citation in programming languages need to be developed and improved.

In the meantime, being original is the best way to avoid cheating in coding. Instead of learning how to copy and paste without plagiarizing, learn how to come up with new and unique codes in your school projects. Plagiarism doesn’t have to be a problem when you are creative enough. 

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