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After purchasing a plagiarism detection software last week, administrators are now turning their attention to the details of this semester’s pilot program.

The pilot program of Turnitin, which will run through June 30, was offered to the University for a trial cost of $1,000, said Todd Zakrajsek, executive director for the Center for Faculty Excellence.

Typical costs for the program can be as large as $50,000 per year, he said.

Classes that will participate in the pilot have not been picked, but both large lecture classes and smaller classroom settings will be included.

UNC also purchased a separate add-on for $2,500 to prevent papers submitted during the pilot from entering the database of 17 billion pages of digitized text.

At Friday’s meeting of the Faculty Council, administrators discussed the merits of Turnitin and the future of UNC Global.

Upon completion of the software’s pilot, the University will evaluate the program’s success to determine how to proceed, Zakrajsek said.

He noted multiple features of the program in addition to plagiarism detection: PeerMark, a peer-editing program; GradeMark, an editing program for professors; and WriteCheck, a program that lets students check their work for plagiarism prior to grading.

“Turnitin has a good deal of potential to assist students with writing, but is also a plagiarism detection system,” Zakrajsek wrote in an email.

Though some faculty members disputed the program’s necessity, Zakrajsek said other methods of plagiarism detection, like Google, are not sufficient.

“Google does not include other student papers,” he said.

Jean DeSaix, a senior lecturer in biology, said using Turnitin would reduce the temptation to cheat.

“My goal is to have a system that will help us to do our best, rather than tempting us to do our worst,” she said.

Before discussing plagiarism in the University’s classrooms, faculty members heard an update on UNC’s global presence.

Dr. Ron Strauss, executive vice provost and chief international officer, presented to the group on the implementation of a four-pronged program that he hopes will fuel UNC’s efforts to expand as a global institution.

Globalization and continued expansion are essential parts of remaining a major university, Strauss said.

He outlined a new plan to help improve UNC’s global standing. The most important aspect of the plan, he said, is to increase the number of internationally-trained faculty.

“They have that global expertise, that advanced knowledge about another society, culture and language,” he said.

Strauss also emphasized the importance of using and increasing the global research facilities of the FedEx Global Education Center as well as forming stronger global partnerships with international universities.

The plan’s final aspect involves spreading globalization efforts to all parts of campus.

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