Ami Moller

Ami Moller staff profile picture

School of English & Media Studies
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
Academic writing assistance and plagiarism in tertiary education

Research Description
A broad segment of well-established research into plagiarism among tertiary students considers incidents of plagiarism to be the by-product of inadequate writing skills, often unintentionally made by uninformed or confused students trying to work on their own. Another distinct and growing research tract within the literature is the phenomenon of students having someone write their entire assessment on their behalf. But what about situations that exist between the instances of students independently appropriating texts due to a lack of academic writing experience and the instances of students actively subcontracting their whole assessment? Less research, especially in the context of NZ, is devoted to examining conceptions of plagiarism through a lens pointed at situations where students utilise a third party during their writing process and production. Ami’s work seeks to expand upon research about perceptions of plagiarism through an investigation into ideas about various types of third-party writing assistance activities which vary in amount, scope, and quality. Using mixed methods, Ami’s research aims to answer questions about what aspects of writing assistance activities NZ university students and staff perceive as indicators of [un]acceptability, the potential motivational factors for engagement, and general conceptualisations of the space between writing assistance and plagiarism.

Personal Description
Ami is interested in learning more about student perspectives on (potentially) plagiaristic activities and academic writing; she is currently working toward a PhD in English at Massey University. Previously, she earned an MA in criminology from Indiana State University while conducting a thesis on stress and behaviour within the police subculture and a BA in criminal justice with an emphasis on sociology at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Professor Lisa Emerson
Dr Keith Comer
Dr Peter Rawlins

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