Plagiarism is not about simple copy-pasting anymore, so technology must catch up. Here’s how advanced plagiarism checkers combat the issue.

Do you think plagiarism is not a serious issue? If you answered yes, you might be surprised by the findings. A research study by Donald McCabe revealed that 58% of students plagiarized content, and 95% admitted they somehow cheated. This statistic doesn’t include writers, academics, researchers and others who fall prey to copying works. Advanced educational technology can save both reputation and money. To raise the standards of academic integrity, it is critical we find solutions for detecting and preventing plagiarism and cheating. 

E-learning is becoming a common, alternative form of education. Along with it, increasingly easy access to multiple sources of pre-published information tempts writers to cut corners instead of composing new ideas. And while plagiarism is strongly disapproved of, numerous cases show how often students get away with cheating. Simple copy-pasting is no longer an option. Now, there are gobs of free tools that instantly show copied scraps in your text. Still, there are several types of plagiarism, that show how students can get inventive when it comes to avoiding extra effort. Today, teachers rarely notice if a piece of work is plagiarized. Why is this? 

Examples of Plagiarism That Cannot Be Detected by the Naked Eye

If you study several sources to compose your writing, you may unintentionally use the same wording as the author, especially when it comes to certain characteristics or technical peculiarities. It is acceptable to use quotes or references and not simply commit paraphrasing plagiarism. But, when people intend to make their plagiarized copy look like the original, they use more “advanced” cheating methods like digital text modification: 

There are other, constantly evolving techniques for evading plagiarism detection such as replacing letters with those of alternative alphabets (that look very similar) or replacing spaces between words with characters in white fonts–so that words run together (as far as the detection software is concerned) but still appear as if there are spaces. ” 

Teresa Fishman, educator, integrity consultant

Here are the ways in which the creativity of students can go wrong when composing an original copy: 

  • replacing characters: the similar-looking characters from other languages can be used to replace letters in the text
  • using white-colored characters: the visible text can hide some transparent letters or symbols in white color
  • using special symbols, fonts, formats: adding tiny symbols between the letters, playing with customized fonts and text formats (like presenting a text like an image) can trick teachers and plagiarism checkers 
  • creating multiple layers: the plagiarized text is placed as a picture over the layer of the original invisible text (which can be a senseless collection of words)

The task of teachers, or academic regulative bodies, is to use educational technology that is capable of detecting these types of plagiarism, therefore preserving academic integrity. Luckily, technology evolves every day and there are tools that can help support this task. 

Advanced Educational Technology to Expose Cheating: ModiFind by Unicheck

Plagiarism prevention software is a must for academic institutions that care about their reputation. 

The problem of plagiarism is real, causing institutions to look for advanced plagiarism checkers that can help. Not all tools can identify text modifications, but ModiFind by Unicheck is one tool able to detect letter substitution, hidden symbols, multiple layers, and more. Here’s how it works. 

The data processor of ModiFind compares the visible text with a set of symbols. If it discovers the content a reader sees does not coincide with the symbols revealed by the computer vision, it displays an “attention” tab with all text manipulations found. Even more, ModiFind can detect modifications in formulas as well. After the inspection, ModiFind will display the results and the teacher will decide how to interpret the findings – not all modifications are considered plagiarism. 

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In a world where technology is developing so quickly that it often replaces humans, the only way to succeed is to develop original thinking. Not only institutions but students themselves can feel the consequences of plagiarizing. Taking it lightly is not an option. Advanced plagiarism checkers, like ModiFind by Unicheck, aim to navigate and help both teachers and students on the path of high-quality education. 

Author

Sumit is a Tech and Gadget freak and loves writing about Android and iOS, his favourite past time is playing video games.

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