The BBC reports that Google will ban essay adverts. I knew this was a problem but hadn’t appreciated how severe it is:
Banning the ads strikes me as sensible, but won’t students simply perform a search instead? Google could also block the searches, but that’s censorship and has difficulties of its own.
The internet has made both paid and unpaid plagiarism too easy; but there has always been a fine line between plagiarism and research (a song by Tom Lehrer comes to mind). Perhaps it is time to change the way students are assessed.
2 thoughts on “Google bans essay ads”
Isn’t this why they introduced examinations in the first place? Now they’re not very fashionable.
Maybe we should roll with the punches – perhaps tutors should set work which goes “find three essays on the topic of the Franco-Prussian-Hungarian wars, and identify three sources they have in common, and two urban myths that they introduce wrongly.”
It would make it meta-studying, but that seems to be what those courses which don’t submit well to exams (the arts ones, principally) are doing anyway – go and read books in a library and then resplurge it.
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