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Application of Plagiarism Screening Software in the Chemical Engineering Curriculum

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

New Classrooms, New Challenges II: Assessing Non-traditional Approaches

Tagged Division

Chemical Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.195.1 - 25.195.10



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Paper Authors


Matthew Cooper North Carolina State University Orcid 16x16

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Matthew Cooper received his B.S. in chemical engineering from West Virginia University in 2002 before working as an Oilfield Engineer with Schlumberger. He earned his graduate degrees (M.S. 2005, Ph.D. 2008) from Ohio University. His M.S. research focused on electrochemical production of hydrogen from ammonia for PEM fuel cell applications, which led to the award and licensing of a U.S. Patent. For his Ph.D. research at the Ohio Coal Research Center, Cooper developed novel catalysts for the efficient production of electricity by solid oxide fuel cells. After receiving his Ph.D., he moved to the Raleigh area to serve as a Research Chemical Engineer for RTI International, focusing on “cutting-edge” energy research. In his free time, Cooper enjoys hiking, sports, and cooking.

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Lisa G. Bullard North Carolina State University

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Lisa G. Bullard is a Teaching Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at North Carolina State University. She received her B.S. in chemical engineering from NC State and her Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. She served in engineering and management positions within Eastman Chemical Co. from 1991-2000. A faculty member at NCSU since 2000, Bullard has won numerous awards for both teaching and advising, including being named as an NCSU Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor, the ASEE Raymond W. Fahien Award, the John Wiley Premier Award for Engineering Education Courseware, NCSU Faculty Advising Award, National Effective Teaching Institute Fellow, NCSU Alumni Outstanding Teacher Award, George H. Blessis Outstanding Undergraduate Advisor Award, ASEE Southeastern Section New Teacher Award, and ASEE-ERM Apprentice Faculty Grant Award. Bullard’s research interests lie in the area of educational scholarship, including teaching and advising effectiveness, academic integrity, process design instruction, and the integration of writing, speaking, and computing within the curriculum.

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Steven W. Peretti North Carolina State University


David F. Ollis North Carolina State University

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David Ollis is Distinguished Professor at North Carolina State University. He has taught courses involving technical writing to both undergraduate and graduate students.

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Application of Plagiarism Screening Software in the Chemical Engineering CurriculumPlagiarism of outside material by students is an area of concern for written assignments includingresearch papers and laboratory reports. In recent years the ease of access to text and othermaterials via the internet has increased the ease with which plagiarism can occur. Acompounding factor is that students raised during the Internet Age likely have different views onintellectual property due to illegal downloads of music, movies and other media being morecommonplace and difficult to police. Though negative effects of plagiarism have traditionallybeen limited to students, recent incidents of plagiarism at large universities have become nationalnews, leading to diminished university reputations. With this in mind, vigilance by universities inidentifying instances of plagiarism can serve to identify and prevent instances of student cheatingwhile protecting their academic reputations.This study examines the application of the plagiarism screening software package TurnItIntoward three classes in a university chemical engineering curriculum, focusing on junior- andsenior-level undergraduate students. The number of instances of plagiarism before and duringuse of the software package will be compared and discussed. A risk in the use of plagiarismscreening software by instructors is the fostering of student distrust, due to students feeling thattheir instructor is “after them” or disrespecting their morality. Student answers to poll questionssoliciting views on the use of plagiarism screening software by their instructors will be examinedto determine how engineering students view the use of such software and any resulting effects onstudent-instructor relationships.

Cooper, M., & Bullard, L. G., & Peretti, S. W., & Ollis, D. F. (2012, June), Application of Plagiarism Screening Software in the Chemical Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--20955

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