Japanese postgraduate students' perceptions of and attitudes towards plagiarism
AffiliationMelbourne Graduate School of Education
Document TypeMasters Research thesis
CitationsTsintzoglou, G. (2011). Japanese postgraduate students' perceptions of and attitudes towards plagiarism. Masters Research thesis, Melbourne Graduate School of Education, The University of Melbourne.
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© 2011 Grammatis Tsintzoglou
Japanese postgraduate students' perceptions of and attitudes towards plagiarism were investigated using phenomenology as the methodological approach. Four postgraduate students participated in a questionnaire and three of these students in a follow-up interview. Analysis showed that students’ perceptions of and attitudes towards plagiarism were initiated in Japan, which constituted some instruction on citation techniques and not so strict regulations. Their transition to Australia was contrasted with very strict regulations, more teachings on plagiarism and a more heavy emphasis on written essay work. Students in general had no problem understanding the general concept of plagiarism or learning more specific techniques of attribution but expressed the need for more explicit instruction for each referencing style required. Some interfering issues including language exposure, assignment overloading and time constraints, were mentioned by students. This was evident in one case of inadvertent plagiarism recorded where time pressures resulted in incomplete proofreading. Despite this, there was no indication that this student or the others had trouble understanding methods of attribution or had serious trouble incorporating external sources into their own work. There was a fair amount of variation in attitudes in the Japanese academic context but attitudes were consistent and in synchrony with Australian university regulations. In addition, three distinct attitudes were present in the three interviewed students, where more time engaged in the Australian academic context meant attitudes were more consistent with university regulations. In all instances though, all students showed a connection with their primary academic context and some antagonism to some rules and regulations in Australia. It is hoped the results from this research study can help researchers and education providers better help Japanese postgraduate students by understanding that they have some preliminary understandings of plagiarism issues and can adapt to their new academic context without major problems, as competent and resilient students.
KeywordsJapanese; postgraduate; plagiarism
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