Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln


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University of Ghana



This study investigated students’ perception of plagiarism, sources of information on plagiarism, attitude towards plagiarism, reasons for acts of plagiarism and knowledge of the consequences of plagiarism. A quantitative approach was used. Data was gathered using survey from a sample size of 319 graduate students of University of Ghana, selected using the stratified sampling technique. The main data collection instrument was the questionnaire and the data were analysed descriptively. Findings showed a universal awareness of plagiarism with lecturers as their major source of information. Students generally had a basic understanding of the concept of plagiarism but have broadened the concept of plagiarism to encompass other forms of academic dishonesty. Although they believed they have control over plagiarism, they still plagiarized. Reasons for plagiarising included poor academic writing skills, laziness, lack of time management skills, poor understanding of plagiarism, ease of downloading other people’s work from the Internet and pressure to succeed. The study creates awareness of plagiarism and its consequences, and facilitates increased knowledge, and understanding of the subject among students. It also adds to knowledge and serves as an additional source of reference to researchers and students in this area of study.