- Academic Research and Writing Tips / Tutorial

Students Who Use Research Writing Services, Cheat, and Lie...

Stealing is wrong. Plagiarism is wrong. We're all taught that from the time we're little children. However, we usually think of stealing as something involving tangible goods: when people take candy from a bin without permission, or money from their mother's purse, or (in a more extreme example) jewelry from a store showcase. Rarely do we consider it stealing when we represent the words or ideas of another person as our own. And yet this is exactly what plagiarism is: the theft of thoughts.

Cheating Students

Clearly, there is nothing wrong with referring to, or integrating, the ideas of other people; this is the great process of true scholarship, in which one person's thoughts become the foundation for new innovations. Where this goes wrong is when proper credit is not given to the original source of the foundational thoughts, ideas, and words. This is, of course, called plagiarism.

At the top levels of universities, plagiarism is an extremely serious problem. Scientists, scholars, and other thinkers who steal the work of others --and are caught -- are viewed with scorn, fired from their jobs, and generally barred from practicing their careers ever again. Most people think this is only fair; and yet so many students fail to see their own actions in the same light. But although the stakes aren't as high, the problem is the same: representing the work of another person as your own is stealing. And this problem is on the rise, especially with the increased use of the Internet, which makes it amazingly easy to find essays and other papers online, print them out, and put a new name at the top of the page.

Often, the products of legitimate custom research, editing, and writing services are lumped into the same category as these stolen papers. This is a shame, for reputable companies create models only, examples of how to write papers of various kinds that students can use to write their own papers. By using these valuable tools, students can learn how to cite their sources properly so that they are not plagiarizing (either inadvertently or on purpose); they can learn how to take the words and ideas of others and spin them into new directions; and they can learn how to present their thoughts in a cohesive, structured form. The use of such models is not plagiarism; it is simply another learning strategy.

Unfortunately, however, there is another way that students practice a form of plagiarism: they cheat legitimate research and writing companies by using stolen credit cards or attempting unauthorized chargebacks in an effort to obtain their model papers for free. This is another form of stealing because academic writers work very hard to create the papers they write for their clients. When students refuse to pay for papers they have purchased (and, more often than not, used), this is another form of stealing the words and ideas of others. A list and sample papers written for fraudulent students can be found at Essay Scam.

Of course, the vast majority of students are not essay thieves and scammers. They honestly want to write their own papers, but they don't always know how to do so. Most of those students who patronize custom research and essay writing services are simply seeking tools which can assist them in their academic careers. But to that small percentage of students who plagiarize in one form or another, I say please, think about your actions. Put yourself in the shoes of the writer who has worked so hard for you, or that scholar who has toiled for years to create a masterpiece. You'll find that all they want is credit for their hard work. Surely, that's fair enough.

List of Fraudulent Students Along With Original Correspondence Gathered from Reliable Sources

Mike Huan, California (Race and Culture Essay)

Phil Jones, UK (Information and Communication Technologies)

Balwant Brian Singh, Canada (Sweatshops Research)

Katallia, Florida (Schizophrenia Research)

Elayne, Cheating Student from NY, New York

Veronique, Cheating Student from London, UK,