Validating a Plagiarism Scale: A Middle Eastern Context

This study aims to validate a scale measuring university students’ attitude towards plagiarism in a Middle Eastern Arabic speaking context. We used Koul’s (2007) plagiarism survey to collect data from both public and private university students between 2015-2016. Using confirmatory factor analysis, exploratory factor analysis and reliability tests, our 517-response sample revealed that plagiarism is a three rather than six-factor variate comprising: Use of social acquaintances to avoid academic failure, reliance on professional/academic sources, and personal circumstances. Further, our findings revealed that students tend to be indifferent regarding personal circumstances (t = 1.663, p > .05). However, our participants considered plagiarism by using social acquaintances to avoid academic failure as unethical (t = 18.664, p < .0001), whereas, they would regard plagiarism by relying on professional/academic sources as an ethical practice (t = -3.960, p < .0001).