Examples of Collusion

Here are six situations where Rook (Rook 2003) had identified where plagiarism or collusion may arise for computing students:

"Situation 1:
Student B has trouble with a part of the code and asks student A for help. Student A shows his/her own code to student B to demonstrate how it has been done. This is collusion and both students will lose their marks for this section.

Situation 2:
Student B has trouble with a part of the code and asks student A for help. Student A types in some code for student B. This is collusion and both students will lose their marks for this section.

Situation 3:
Student B looks at student A's code without student A knowing, in order to see some code that may help them with their assignment. This is plagiarism, and student B will lose marks for this section. But if both students have produced similar code and both deny copying, then both students could be penalised.

Situation 4:
Student B has trouble with the code and finds some suitable code on the Internet or in a book. Student B copies it, make a few adjustments, and gets it to work in this situation. This is plagiarism and student B will lose marks for the section. (Unless student B indicated in the assignment that this code has been used, in which case marks will be awarded for the parts the student has written.)

Situation 5:
Student B has trouble with the code and consults a book or the Internet for similar code. On finding some, the student studies it to understand how the author has solved the problem. Using an improved understanding of programming, student B writes his/her own code to solve the assignment and acknowledges the assistance of the source by referencing it. This is perfectly fine and a useful way to study programming.

Situation 6:
Student B has trouble with the code and asks student A for help. Student A explains some of the programming principles that student B is having trouble with, possibly giving bits of code that would work in general situations. This is perfectly fine and a useful process for both students.


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