ABSTRACT

Plagiarism detection services (PDSs) are pervasive and widely adopted at institutions of higher learning across the globe. For example, Turnitin, a popular PDS, is used at over “15,000” institutions globally, with over “734 million” student papers submitted to the Turnitin database (“Feedback Studio,” 2017). If someone is talking about plagiarism in relation to education in the twenty-first century, this type of technology will almost certainly be a part of the conversation. These programs offer a seemingly convenient, mess-free “corporate solution” to complicated and nuanced issues with student writing and teaching labour (Marsh, 2004, p. 428). However, PDSs are highly contested by professionals who study student writing; and yet despite myriad reservations from teachers and scholars alike, PDSs have continued to increase in popularity. What is most concerning about these services is the values they promote about writing pedagogy on a global scale. Using a PDS impacts students by creating and perpetuating an environment of fear and punishment about plagiarism, which is both ineffective and counterproductive for reducing it (Drum, 1986).