In June 2008, celebrity psychiatrist Raj Persaud was disciplined by the General Medical Council for the unattributed republication of work by other scholars as though it was his own. This high-profile case is only one example of a growing anxiety about plagiarism, both in academic works and, particularly, in undergraduate courses. Indeed, concern about plagiarism now starts before students even get to Higher Education. For example, the discovery that 233 university applicants all cited as their inspiration to study medicine the same childhood incident – in which they set fire to their pyjamas – has led to the routine screening of all UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) applications.\ud Many issues are raised by this current emphasis on plagiarism, with each apparently prompting a more fundamental question: why are we more concerned about plagiarism now than previously? Why has there been a growth in plagiarism? Has there been a growth in plagiarism? What is plagiarism? Why do students plagiarize? What can and should we be doing to address the issue?Peer-reviewedPost-prin
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