In a piece of work that a student handed in recently, I found the following sentences. The assignment was for a research methods course and the task was to analyse some questionnaire data using IBM SPSS Statistics.

*The speculations are as per the following:*

Null theory, H0: There is no contrast between the extent of guys and females who went to the company’s gathering a month ago.

Alternative speculation, H1: There is a contrast between the extent of guys and females who went to the association’s gathering a month ago.…………………..

The t-test equivalents to 2.933 with 67 degrees of opportunity, and related p-estimation of 0.05. Since the p-esteem is equivalent to the 0.05 level of essentialness, we infer that the test was inconsequential. In this way it is inferred that there is no connection between the pay and the quantity of years worked, additionally the invalid speculation can’t be rejected at 0.05 and presume that the compensation can’t be clarified from the quantity of years worked.

The language is very unusual. What I think the student should have written was:

The hypotheses are as per the following:

Null hypothesis, H0: There is no difference between the number of males and females who went to the company’s meeting a month ago.

Alternative hypotheses, H1: There is a difference between the number of males and females who attended the company’s meeting a month ago.…………………..

The t-test equivalents to 2.933 with 67 degrees of freedom, and related p-value of 0.05. Since the p-value is equivalent to the 0.05 level of significance, we infer that the test was not significant. In this way it is inferred that there is no relationship between the pay and the number of years worked, additionally the null hypothesis cannot be rejected at 0.05 and presume that the salary cannot be predicted from the number of years worked.

I might be wrong, but I assume that the student was trying to avoid plagiarism by using a thesaurus to paraphrase. He had been told to use his own words and was trying. However, what the student does not seem to realise is that specific technical terms cannot be paraphrased and need to be used with their precise meanings.

How should the student be expected to know what must be paraphrased and what must not be? In the case of – for example “p-esteem”, how should the student know that, in some contexts “esteem” is a synonym for “value”, but not here?