A Systematic Review Into the Psychological Causes and Correlates of Plagiarism

Simon A. Moss, Barbara White, Jim Lee

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    41 Citations (SciVal)


    Interventions that are designed to stem plagiarism do not always override the motivation of individuals to cheat and, therefore, may not diminish misconduct. To inform more effective approaches, we conducted a systematic review to clarify the psychological causes of plagiarism. This review of 83 empirical papers showed that a specific blend of circumstances may foster plagiarism: an emphasis on competition and success rather than development and cooperation coupled with impaired resilience, limited confidence, impulsive tendencies, and biased cognitions. Fortunately, whenever students feel their life and studies align to their future aspirations, many of these circumstances tend to dissipate.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)261-283
    Number of pages23
    JournalEthics and Behavior
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 19 May 2018


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