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January 05, 2007

Plagiarism awareness and information skills for teachers

Two interesting short reports have been made available by Netskills at the University of Newcastle, following a couple of projects funded by the Eduserv Foundation under our Information Literacy  Initiatives.

The projects developed pilot workshop programmes related to information literacy in the schools sector, specifically covering plagiarism and information skills and targeted at teachers.  The reports describe the workshops that the Netskills team developed and some of the issues they encountered in trying to deliver them to school teachers.

It is perhaps unfortunate that the small scale of the programmes delivered through this work makes it difficult to draw very firm conclusions.  Nonetheless, both reports close with recommendations for further activities, and these seem to make a lot of sense to me.  There is clearly a lot of scope for further work in these areas.

As the reports say at the end:

...the programme has shown that there is a clear interest and pressing need for training, awareness-raising and debate about plagiarism in the schools sector.

and

...the project has identified a need for a more strategic approach to the staff development of teachers in terms of their information skills, but due to the existing pressures on teachers' time, the value of this development must be clearly demonstrated.

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