Sci & Tech

New System Minimizes Academic Plagiarism

New System Minimizes Academic Plagiarism New System Minimizes Academic Plagiarism

Thousands of university professors have signed up to ‘Hamanandjoo’,a system designed to compare academic dissertations, an official with the Ministry of Science, Research and Technologies said on Wednesday.

Users can upload their documents to the website and compare them with other similar documents in a matter of minutes. The system has been designed to help reduce plagiarism and observe copyright laws, IRNA reported.  

The website also aims to promote technologies that can ease free public access to information. While the system will help researchers and students access needed resources, it is also expected to boost research quality.  

The number of visitors to the website is on the increase, the secretary of IT Strategic Council, Ali Moeini, said at the Third National Conference of IT Managers of Academic Institutes.  

The system searches through the dissertations uploaded and also those that are available on the ministry’s website known as ‘Irandoc.’ The sources of similar essays will be retrieved and displayed, the official announced.  

“During the pilot phase of the project, 90000 theses were submitted for comparison. The results will soon be made available for the use of universities.”

Once the results go public, some compromising situations may arise for high-profile people.

All available theses have been compared and “we now know which fields have the most cases of plagiarism,” the official said.

If all universities submit their dissertations to the system, chances of infringements will reduce significantly.

The cost of using the system will be announced once Hamanandjoo is commercialized. They are, however, not significant and mostly pertain to system maintenance, the official clarified.

Hamanandjoo, however, is not currently connected to international plagiarism databases, but later integration could be implemented on the site.

  Committee Level

In addition to the new website, the National Plan for Online Dissertations has been approved during a meeting of the High Council of Cyberspace.

A committee for boosting content production approved the plan that had been listed as urgent during a session held at the National Center of Cyberspace on Tuesday.

The National Committee of Online Dissertations has prepared the principles and macro policies of the plan using a strategic approach to help suggest solutions for problems

The peril of plagiarized dissertations has become a common phenomenon in the Iranian academic circles and the new website cannot come soon enough, according to some academics.

  Severity of the Problem

In a 2014 article in Mufath, the writer discusses the rise of the relatively new plagiarism industry in Iran. The author states that on Tehran’s Enqelab Street, outside Tehran University’s main campus, students and dealers enter into contractual agreements with private unknown groups, exchanging substantial fees for fully written dissertations.

Some organizations cover a limited number of disciplines, like the humanities or business management. Others cover almost all majors offered at Iranian universities, including the humanities, social sciences, law, the arts, business administration, medicine, computer science and engineering.

“These dissertation groups shamelessly advertise their services across Tehran. Dissertation advertisements overwhelm street walls, telephone poles and even locations where advertisements are strictly forbidden, like traffic signs.”

The advertisements do not provide much information, usually only the word “dissertation” with an address and telephone number.

It is not known how many plagiarized or similar documents Hamanandjoo is likely to discover. However, it will contribute to the overall assault on the growing fake academic writing industry.