Research Projects

Plagiarism Research Project

We invited members of a large Canadian university to participate in a research project designed to describe how students, faculty, and administrators learn about, understand, and recognize plagiarism.

Across higher education, dramatic increases in charges of plagiarism against both faculty and students over the last decade suggest that our understandings of what constitutes plagiarism might be changing. At the same time, policies for handling reported cases of plagiarism invoke harsher penalties. It has never been more important to articulate clearly what we mean by plagiarism, and to educate students at all levels about what constitutes plagiarism.

Our goal is to develop effective teaching and learning strategies and education programs to prevent and respond to plagiarism in university contexts. To this aim, we are sharing information about our publications, presentation and educational materials.

The research team gratefully acknowledges the support from Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada research grant.

Research Team

Dr. K. Lynn Taylor (Principal Investigator)
Dalhousie University
Halifax, NS

Dr. Barbara. L.  Paterson
University of New Brunswick
Fredericton, NB         

Dr. Lynn Smith
The University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB

Brandy L. Usick (Project Manager)
The University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB

Jori Thordarson (Research Assistant)
The University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB


Taylor, K. L., Usick, B. L., & Paterson, B. (2004). Understanding Plagiarism: The intersection of personal, pedagogical, institutional and social contexts. The Journal on Excellence in College Teaching, 15(3), 153-174.

Usick, B. L. (2004). Is plagiarism an issue in graduate education? An examination of two graduate programs. Master of Education thesis, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.

Paterson, B., Taylor, L. & Usick, B. (2003). The construction of plagiarism in a school of nursing. Learning in Health and Social Care, 2(3), 147-158.


Taylor, K. L., Usick, B. L., Paterson, B. L. & Thordarson, J. (2006, April). Preventing plagiarism: The intersection of education, discipline, policy and practice. Paper presented at the Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Francisco.

Taylor, K. L., Usick, B. L., Thordarson, J. & Smith, L. M. (2004, June). Understanding plagiarism across disciplines: Common concept, diverse practices. Paper presented at the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education Conference, Ottawa, ON.

Usick, B. L. (2004, May). Plagiarism: An issue at the graduate level? Paper presented at the Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education Conference, Congress 2004, Winnipeg, MB.

Usick, B. L. & Thordarson, J. (2004, February). Plagiarism: U of M ‘up close and personal’. Paper presented at the 3rd Annual UTS Teaching and Learning Symposium, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.

Resources and Educational materials