What the Corresponding Colors Mean in the Student Example and in the Source (the Textbook Pages)

Highlight, blue

Facts do exist for this in the source.

Highlight, pink (a reddish one on pages)

This word is from the source. A few words indicates passive reading; many words, plagiarism or “half-copy” plagiarism. Highlighting a single letter in pink (such as leave) means the student just used a different form (such as left) of a word from the source.

Highlight, yellow

This section of the source is misread or the student never read the required source. Highlighting a quotation mark () indicates the student changed the quotation without revealing the changes.

Highlight, green

Highlighting a quotation mark () indicates the student used the required quotation marks correctly.


Click on the specific link for what you want to hear:

·         If you want to hear how to interpret the highlighting of words in the Student’s Essay

·         If you want to understand how the student lacks this essential Good Habit for Evidence: Reliable Sources Only

·         If you want this student’s work placed in the context of a job – Never practice a skill no one will ever want in the workplace and certainly never have as your habit for work actions that will destroy your reputation.


Student 5—How the Student Did Not Use Reliable Sources and Instead How the Student Chose—Unsuccessfully—Not to Work at All

The student did not use the required reliable sources. Look at the yellow below.


Nothing in yellow in the student’s essay comes from the source. The words in yellow are not only from a Wikipedia webpage, but also the same words are copied on many webpages. It is therefore easy to prove that the student chose not to do the work at all. Why?

·         The text is plagiarized from the Internet.

·         The content details are not in our textbook, and the presentation is not as wise or useful as the one in our textbook.

Student 5 wrote this answer: Grant's goal of the "peace policy" was to minimize military conflict with the Indians. The Indians were to stay on reservations where they would receive government subsidies and training supervised by religious denominations. Indians were no longer allowed to engage in raids or end war parties off the reservations. The Army's job was to force them back. Native Americans were increasingly forced to live on reservations. Grant appointed his aide General Ely S. Parker, a Seneca Indian, as Commissioner of Indian Affairs. The Grant administration focused on well-meaning goals of placing "good men" in positions of influence such as Quakers as US Indian agents to various posts throughout the nation. 


On the other hand, the Dawes Act of 1887 authorized the President of the United States to survey American Indian tribal land and to divide it into 160-acre plots for individual Indians to assimilate them. The act also provided that the government would open the lands up for settlement by non-Indians.


The good habit for evidence that Student 5 did not follow is:


If You Think That Professors (And Bosses) Can’t Recognize That You Have Used Other Sources (And Perhaps Even Copied Other Sources’ Words)

If you want to see the pages from the source, click on the links for what our textbook says about Grant’s “Peace Policy” and about the Dawes Severalty Act. In this case, however, nothing in yellow in the student’s essay comes from the source. It’s from many webpages that had the same words. It is plagiarized from the Internet. Because I use a required source and because I am familiar with the content for this question, in most cases, I can enter 1 search phrase from the student’s written work in a search engine and see displayed the webpages a student used.


If you think TurnItIn.com is necessary to catch plagiarism, it is not. Usually—if a professor is accustomed to language as it is used to explain different content and if they are experienced in a discipline—a professor can recognize plagiarized sources.




Why Having A Required Source Makes All The Difference And Why This Is Like The World Of Work










Think about this for a moment:

·         If students can use any source, professors cannot efficiently prove that the student’s statements are factually incorrect.

·         If students must use required, reliable sources, students must prove their accuracy.

This model for responsibility is closer to the business world: bosses will:
- Either instantly recognize if you are inaccurate
- Or, if you are factually incorrect and they believe you, you will face the consequences.

If you do not already have this Good Habit for Evidence, develop it now.













Copyright C. J. Bibus, Ed.D. 2003-2014



WCJC Department:

History – Dr. Bibus

Contact Information:

281.239.1577 or bibusc@wcjc.edu

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