Apr. 17th, 2012

karmaschild: (True Blood: You suck.)
I got my first taste of plagiarism today. In my Business Communications class, we had one assignment due today. We had to compose an email on a specific subject and use specific grammatical items in the message. Things like "a sentence using a plural noun ending in o in possessive form". That kind of thing. There were five or six elements we had to include. We would then email our messages to each student in the class and the instructor (the computers in this room are set up on their own little network) when we got to class today.

When class started, there were three people present. I and two other students showed up. First thing, the instructor said to open the email program and send the message that we were to have ready to send. I sent mine. The other two people groaned and made excuses about how they forgot, didn't save it properly, whatever.

I rolled my eyes a little there, because this is the class where we are 5 weeks in and every single assignment over that time, the teacher has had to extend past the deadline because someone "forgot" and begged to do it late. She doesn't even take off points. And then there's me who transfered into the class a week and a half into the quarter, caught up with everything, and have stayed on top of everything since, turning it all in on time. I am more than a little tired of working to get everything in on time (in all my classes) just to have this one class skate by again, and again, and again. Anyway...

So, I sent my assignment out to everyone on our little network. The teacher then started her lecture for the day. While she was lecturing, as usual, I noticed this girl one row forward from me was working on the computer, rather than listening or following along in the book. This is another thing that bugs me. This class has several people who ignore lecture, do other things, then complain when they get stuff wrong because they don't have the information presented in lecture. What was weird about this one this morning was that the file she had open didn't look like she was typing an email. It had a whole bunch of text at the top and she was typing below it, scrolling back and forth to refer to it while she was typing. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was actually watching her cheat off my work.

Later, when the lecture was almost over, she sent out her email. When I got it, I thought at first that someone had accidentally hit "forward" on my email. The thing that really pisses me off is less that she copied my work and more that she did it so damn badly. It was a line-for-line regurgitation of what I sent out minutes before. The paragraphs each had the exact ideas as the ones in mine, they had the exact same number of sentences as mine, it had three paragraphs like mine (the assignment only called for two), every one of the grammar points we were to bold/highlight/etc were in the exact same place as mine. Several of her sentences were identical to mine, except for an "and" or a word or two tacked on at the end.

If you're going to cheat, put some damn effort into it already. Particularly when your copy and paste job will be sent right back to the person you just stole it from!

I emailed the teacher (I love this class. I don't even have to speak. I can just email her at the front of the room and she will answer right away.) and pointed it out to her. I also noted that I was really pretty hacked off about it and that I was having trouble concentrating because I was too busy seeing red. How nice of her to do this on a day we were supposed to be taking an in class exam. She emailed me back that it would be taken care of.

The problem now is that I'm torn on how I feel about this. On the one hand, it's plastered all over the place that this school has a very strict policy on plagiarism and I don't know if that means "you'll get a zero on your assignment" or that she'll be kicked out of the class or something. I'd feel bad, I guess, if she was kicked out, but at the same time, I want something to happen. It's just insult to injury to be the only one in the whole damn class who turns in an assignment on time, only to have it ripped off by someone who couldn't be bothered. At the same time, stealing one email seems like such a small thing.

I dunno. Ugh. My brain hurts.

*squee*

Apr. 17th, 2012 06:06 pm
karmaschild: (YAY!)
Okay, this is not my picture, but imagine this happening in a 32oz glass jar:



I found a praying mantis egg case in the wild rose bush outside my window. Actually, I didn't know what the hell it was, but internet searches of bug cocoons + what lives in our area suggested it was the egg case of a Chinese praying mantis. I stuck it in a jar thinking nothing would really happen, since it seemed so light and empty. There was nothing but the egg case in there when I left for class this morning, so I guess they hatched out while I was in class today.

I am so stupidly amused by this. I may actually buy another egg case online next year and do it again if my babies don't leave me any. ;)

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