Plagiarism is defined as an act of copying another person’s work or ideas without acknowledging their authorship. For instance, when writing, one may use a definition developed by someone else without providing a reference to this person. There are examples of more blatant plagiarism when writers copy entire paragraphs penned by other people and paste them into their write-ups. Plagiarism is seen as a form of intellectual theft and fraud; if it happens in academia, plagiarism violates academic integrity. When it occurs, the person who plagiarizes demonstrates no regard for other people’s work and allows dishonesty into academia.
Self-plagiarism is a type of plagiarism that is defined as recycling and reusing one’s own ideas. It seemingly does not cross the line as self-plagiarism is not exactly intellectual theft. Yet, using one’s own ideas repeatedly is frowned upon in academia, and rightfully so. Firstly, it is assumed that every new manuscript will contain new information and new knowledge. Self-plagiarism defeats the primary purpose of research, which is making a discovery. Secondly, in some cases, a person’s own words might not belong to him or her if there is a copyright claim from a different party. Lastly, if any serious journal discovers self-plagiarism, it will result in unfavorable consequences for the author.
In the field of criminology, like in any other field, plagiarism is seen as fraud and leads to punishment. It is a violation of academic or professional integrity, depending on in which domain it occurs. Research plays a major role in criminology as it informs daily practices and impacts their efficiency, and careless use of other people’s ideas may compromise its validity. On top of that, people who enter the field often do so out of innate attraction to justice, and plagiarism demonstrates that they might not the necessary personal philosophy and ethics.