Rules to follow

Ethics refers to the concepts of right and wrong, good and evil and responsibility within a culture or sub-culture. As it specifically relates to education, ethics address the standards of behavior expected of students and teachers in a university setting.

Ethically speaking, the university expects students to maintain integrity and honesty in their academic endeavors. This would include refusing to cheat, lie or deceive when taking exams, submitting assignments or taking credit for work accomplished. Likewise, professors behave ethically by evaluating student’s work with fairness and justice, using the same impartial standard of correctness for all students.

Cheating
The dictionary defines cheating as deceiving, misleading or breaking the rules to gain unfair personal advantage. Unfortunately, cheating has pervaded the educational environment in more and more ways over the years, especially with the advances in technology and personal digital devices.

Whether students take information off the internet and claim it as their own work, refer to a handheld device to reveal information during an exam or steal answers off their neighbor’s paper, they mislead and deceive their professors by claiming someone else’s information as their own. Professors assign papers and give exams to gauge each student’s level of effort, understanding or mastery of a subject. They cannot gain an accurate measure of what a student has learned if the student does not follow the rules to do his/her own work.

The drive to succeed and compete, as well as the lack of willingness to put in hard work, fuels much of the cheating students do today. If students only see the purpose of a university education as a means to further their career goals, perhaps they miss the true objective of learning to enhance their knowledge and understanding of the world around them.

While cheaters don’t always get caught directly, ultimately their cheating will get them in trouble—either when they don’t know the things they need to in order to do the job well, or when people lose their confidence in them due to lack of trust. Either way, cheaters lose.

Copyright
In the U.S., copyright law protects original intellectual material from being stolen by others who attempt to take credit for it. It applies to anything literary, including music, poetry, writing, architecture, software, etc. It differs from a patent or trademark in that it protects intellectual property, and patents protect inventions or discoveries.  In other words, you cannot take what someone else wrote and claim it as your original work.

Any copyrighted material must be credited to its originator when you refer to it in a project or paper. The © symbol indicates that the item has been registered and copyrighted.

The process for copyrighting involves completing an application form and filing a fee along with the items you wish to copyright. For more information on filing for a copyright, see www.copyright.gov.

Plagiarism
The dictionary defines plagiarism as an act or instance of using or closely imitating the language and thoughts of another author without authorization and the representation of that author's work as one's own, as by not crediting the original author. This will apply anytime you write a paper or present a project. Do not pretend that what someone else wrote or said originated with you. Always give credit for the words and thoughts of others by quoting your sources. Make sure that you wrote any paper you submit.

Because we live in a world where many people try to get by with as little effort as possible, teachers have had to create some tricks of their own to discourage this practice. University professors have methods for recognizing when student’s attempt to pass off someone else’s work as their own and consequences often include failing the class, and even getting dropped from the degree program. They take this kind of behavior very seriously. Sir Walter Scott said “What a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” He referred to the fact that deception may appear easy and uncomplicated, but it actually initiates more and more deception until you end up tangled in a sticky web of deception.

Buying term papers
If you analyze the purpose for writing a term paper, you realize that your instructors want you to research and learn about a particular topic and understand it well enough to explain it thoroughly in your own words, in an organized and reader-friendly way. Depending on the assignment, some research papers summarize and pull together all the pertinent information about the topic in your own words, whereas other papers present not only the information available, but expand on it and sometimes build a new theory or case based on it. This second kind of paper demonstrates your grasp of the information and challenges you to take it further based on your own interests and goals.

However, in this day of high technology and access, people tend to get lazy and rely on others to do the hard work for them. Certainly this has its advantages in areas where it doesn’t make sense to “reinvent the wheel,” but in situations that the work aspect actually builds your skills, experience and understanding; it only makes sense to do the work yourself. What will a degree in your field profit you if you don’t actually have the knowledge and expertise to go with it?

So, while you will find resources and other students will pressure you to take advantage of term paper writing services available, ethically you should not consider paying someone else to write your paper for you. Do not hesitate to use the services of the Writing Center or a tutor to help you say what you want to say or learn how to organize your information and write it clearly, but do not pay someone to do the work for you. Term paper writing services will try to convince you that buying their services will actually benefit you, but remember the bottom line—the purpose for writing your term paper is not to see how much someone else knows or understands your topic and what they think about it, but what you know, understand and think.

Many, if not all of the companies that offer term paper writing services plagiarize, or use someone else’s words, recycle their papers, make up information and/or botch the bibliography. The very fact that they sell these services to students who will earn degrees based on information they have not learned or processed, should cause you to question their ethics right away.

Knowing the state of the world we live in, teachers have had to create some tricks of their own to discourage this practice. University professors have methods for recognizing when student’s attempt to pass off someone else’s work as their own and consequences often include failing the class, and even getting dropped from the degree program. They take this kind of behavior very seriously. Sir Walter Scott said “What a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” He referred to the fact that deception may appear easy and uncomplicated, but it actually initiates more and more deception until you end up tangled in a sticky web of deception.