Patrick Carney (
Thu, 12 Jun 97 5:24:55 EDT

Just to add to the opinions, I too cannot imagine calling that
plagiarism. In fact, it seems to me that in so doing, one might diminish the
seriousness with which real plagiarism is taken by kids. I think kids have a
genuine sense of justice and when they are told that using their own work
twice is equivalent to copying another's work and they know they did the
work, I think their natural reaction would be to write off the complaint.

Now if conditions such as Scot mentioned are imposed, that would be
different, but still not plagiarism -- just violating subjective rules
established for the assignment. As was pointed out, some places have the
opposite rule (i.e., submit the same paper for History and English -- the
History teacher grades content and the English teacher style for example) in
which case the student would be expected to turn it in twice. So if the act
were called plagiarism, then the student would think some teachers are asking
that they plagiarize material!

Also, in the academic world, I believe many people spend years on one
basic research theme and just gradually change it over years. For that
matter, if the second edition of a book not just submitting substantially the
same thing with some slight updates (slight in the sense of a small
percentage) frequently?

In short, in the absence of a policy such as Dartmouth has, I would
encourage students to do this. Indeed, I have told students to hold onto a
work like that which I thought was well done and told them when they get to
college, they should be able to expand on it a bit more and make it into a
good college paper. They are usually happy that I thought so much of it and I
hope that they are not thinking I encourage unethical behavior.

Take care,
Bro. Pat Carney