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Confessions of an Academic Forger


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About the Book

A disturbing trend faces education in the U.S.—not plagiarism but academic forgery (students purchasing and signing their names to work produced by others). This book, by a former professional forger, describes the difference between the two and presents case studies along with an exposé of the trade. The author provides a thorough treatment of the topic and reveals the serious implications for the future of academia. Educators should educate themselves about forgery and join the conversation about solving the problem.

About the Author(s)

English major Jeffrey Alfred Ruth graduated from the University of Michigan. Forger Ossi Chesterton, his alter ego, did not. He lives in Howell, Michigan.

Bibliographic Details

Jeffrey Alfred Ruth
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 196
Bibliographic Info: appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2015
pISBN: 978-0-7864-9688-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1866-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 6

Preface 9

Introduction: Meet Ossi Chesterton, Academic Forger 13

Section I: Studies in Forgery

1. Foundations for Forgery 17

2. Liars, Legacies, and Losers 29

3. The Foreign Factor 40

4. Honest Cheats, Career Cheaters, and Cheater Networks 51

5. The Double Blind 62

6. Competitors and Honorable Forgery 73

7. Is One Sitting on Your Desk Right Now? 84

8. I Guess We’re All Shakespeareans 95

9. Dissertation Disorder: I Can’t Get There From Here! 105

10. Egregious Circumstances 116

Section II: A Few Fine Points

11. Turnitin—Not the Failsafe You Think It Is 127

12. The Internet and the Ease of Forgery 137

13. Online Classes and Proof of Ability 145

14. Word Processing, Properties, and Copyrights 150

15. The Future of Academic Forgery 156

Appendix One: Congratulations! You Made the Book 167

Appendix Two: Which One Is the Forgery? A Four Paper

Challenge 175

Chapter Notes 189

References 191

Index 193