Plagiarism takes on many forms. It can take the form of either single source copying wherein the plagiarizer copies information from one source or it can also take the form of multiple source copying wherein the plagiarizer copies information from various sources. Either way, these activities are considered as plagiarism when the sources of information are not cited or acknowledged.
Multiple source plagiarism is somehow considered as a serious form of plagiarism because a lot of sources are plagiarized. This happens when for instance the first paragraph of a paper is copied from one source, the second paragraph is copied from another source, and so on and so forth until the entire paper is accomplished by copying from multiple sources. Of course, as a teacher, you do not want your students to commit the multiple source copying because it would mean that they did not apply anything they have learned from you. On the other hand, as a student you do not want yourself to commit plagiarism or you will only be punished for committing it.
The Other Term – Mosaic Plagiarism
Multiple source copying is also known to many as mosaic plagiarism or patchwork plagiarism. It is called as such because this occurs when a person copies his or her work from different sources then patches them all up to create one single entirely written paper. The interweaved information can be in the form of phrases, sentences, or paragraphs.
Prevention of Multiple Source Copying
As a teacher, in order to prevent your students from committing multiple source copying, you should inform them what it is and how it is considered as plagiarism. You should also inform them about the different serious consequences of committing plagiarism. On the other hand, as a student, to be able to prevent multiple source copying, do not be tempted to copying information directly from sources. If you do, make sure to cite the sources. However, do not try to make up your entire paper full of citations.
Detection of Multiple Source Copying
Multiple source copying can be difficult to detect at first but with experience, you will be able to learn how to easily detect it. Since multiple source copying involves copying form different sources, you can check the entire article for consistency. If the font style or font size is not consistent, then be suspicious about multiple source copying. Is the narration style also not consistent, then this is also another reason to be suspicious of multiple source copying.
Apart from those inspection tools, you may also use theplagiarism tool to help you detect multiple source copying. This tool will point out to you the sources of coped information, if there are any.