I read in an article today that "Peter Levin, a former lecturer at the London School of Economics, has produced a guide to avoiding plagiarism," in which "he says the system of learning promoted in western universities - with its reliance on learning from other people's writing and lectures - actually forces students and academics to plagiarise."
Here's my question: how else are people supposed to learn if not from other people's writings and lectures? Ideas and words, I'm sorry to have to say, do not float around in the ether; they come from what people say, and people like to write things down so that their utterances endure and can be passed on. The claim that learning from lectures and texts practically "forces" one to plagiarize sounds like something one would hear from a student caught in the academically dishonest act of plagiarism.
From my experience, the best thing to do to discourage plagiarism is to be specific about what is expected that the student will do in his or her paper. In this way you can "force" students to write something that is more than a reproduction of what has already been written down by someone else.