Common Core Anchor Standards
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
I’m going to pull in two other important sets of standards this month.
The International Society for Technology in Education has the ISTE Standards S (formerly known as NETS):
Research and Information Fluency - Students locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and media.
The Partnership for 21st Century Skills Information Literacy Standard asks students to
Apply a fundamental understanding of the ethical/legal issues surrounding the access and use of information
Digital Citizenship Week is October 19-26, 2014. While Digital Citizenship encompasses many things, we would be remiss if we did not address plagiarism and copyright when we talk to our students about what it means to be a responsible digital citizen. Clearly, teaching students the appropriate and ethical uses of information is key in helping them become responsible Digital Citizens, but how can we do that? Luckily, there are tons of people and organizations out there who are addressing our needs! Below are a variety of resources we can use to help teach our students about the ethical use of information.
Let's start with what we need to teach our students about plagiarism and copyright. We need to teach them when it is appropriate to use other’s information.
Plagiarism, in short, is using someone else's words or ideas without saying where they came from. For whatever reason, this seems to be a very difficult concept for many students. Below are some resources to help you teach your students about plagiarism.
- Common Craft are known for their short but sweet explanations of things. They produced one of their famous videos about plagiarism that clearly and quickly explains what plagiarism is.
- The 21st Century Information Fluency Project was created by Dr. Dennis O’Connor and Dr. Carl Heine. The website offers a variety of interactive tutorials and micromodules about information literacy skills. This one is the Plagiarism MicroModule , this is an interactive Plagiarism MicroModule Companion.
- Plagiarism.org has easy to understand information about Plagiarism.
- Acadia University’s Vaughan Memorial Library has created this cool interactive plagiarism tutorial for students at the university level, but it is also appropriate for 6-12 students.
- Lycoming College created this really cool game to assess student understanding of plagiarism.
Copyright is a hard to interpret law, one that becomes even harder with consideration given to things like Fair Use and Creative Commons Licensing. Although it is not important that students understand all of the ins and outs of copyright law, it is important that they are aware that it exists, and how it ties in to plagiarism.
- Cyberbee has an interactive, Flash based website, where students can click on their questions about copyright and get the answers.
- Teaching Copyright offers some great lesson plans to help teachers talk copyright with their students.
- 21st Century Information Fluency Project has a very brief explanation of Copyright on their website. They also offer an interactive game where students are asked to find the copyright information on a variety of websites.
- The Library of Congress offers this awesome collection of resources called Taking the Mystery out of Copyright
Creative Commons is a relatively new licensing project that was created so that others could share their work with various levels of usage rights.
- Common Craft, as usual, does a great job of summing up Copyright and Creative Commons
- This video on the Creative Commons Website is a great introduction to Creative Commons Licensing and how it works.
Music, Video and Images
Written works are not the only information protected by copyright. Image, music, video and any information in a tangible format is covered by copyright laws! Here are a few resources to help you with that!
- Common Sense Media offers this great video about piracy and ethical use.
- Pia Jane Bijkerk offers this really awesome graphic about citing images.
- Harvard offers this great guide about finding images you are allowed to use.
Teaching kids the proper way to use information is just one step in the battle. We also need to teach them how to cite their sources. We want them to know that they should give credit to those whose work they are borrowing from. The earlier we start teaching citation, the better our students will be equipped to give credit. Luckily, we no longer need them to memorize where to put the periods and commas in their citations.
There are a multitude of free to use citation generators available to help students and teacher create proper citations for the information they use. Everyone has their personal favorite, but I thought I would provide you with a variety of options so you could pick your own!
All of these tools, resources and tutorials are great, but the number one way we, as educators, can help our students learn about copyright and plagiarism is to model appropriate behavior! Always say where your information comes from (including those study questions you copied and pasted!) and be considerate of the information (including images, videos and worksheets) you provide to students!
Do you have a great tool or resource to share about Copyright, Plagiarism or citations! Be sure to chime in!