In our final class, we discussed our thoughts on plagiarism and traditional grammar. What stuck out to me the most in Howard’s “Policing Plagiarism” article was that teacher’s are often expecting students to produce original works when assigned unoriginal assignments. As a student, I’ve had teachers who repetitively assign formulaic compositions, where I feel compelled to follow a certain layout, and even—to a certain extent—say certain ideas. I think this stifled manner of writing often leads to impulses of plagiarism. If teachers assign interesting and creative projects, I think many more students would be willing to put in some effort.
In terms of grammar in education, I agree with what a lot of people said in class that kids should learn traditional grammar rules, especially when young, and then begin to question these guidelines in creative ways as they enter higher education. It is true that a lot of my favorite writers use traditionally incorrect grammar, and yet their words have had the most impact on me. Lingual communication already inherently limits one’s ability to convey an idea; why should we further confine ourselves on the page with universal restrictions? Emotion is never grammatical and neither is humor. These elements are tied more closely to timing, imagery, and rhythm. That’s why I think students should definitely learn traditional grammar. To break it.