What does this mean?
- When writing an assignment, you must use your own words and thoughts.
- When you use another person’s exact phrasing, you must distinguish the text or material taken from that source from your own (i.e. through the use of quotation marks or an indentation).
- When you use another person’s thoughts or ideas, though you may not be directly quoting them, you must both acknowledge that these are not your own and reference the original source (i.e. through a footnote or other appropriate form of reference).
- If you are paraphrasing what another person has stated, you must use completely different language, essentially re-writing it. Altering a sentence or paragraph slightly is neither appropriate nor adequate. And remember, paraphrases still require a reference notation.
- Thoughts or ideas may be gleaned from various sources (i.e. journal articles, the Internet or interviews). You must acknowledge any thought or idea that is not your own regardless of from where it was derived. If you are unsure about the applicable referencing rules, consult a relevant citation guide (i.e. APA, MLA, Turabian, etc.) or speak to your instructor.
- Each instructor has specific expectations for how students are to acknowledge sources in their courses. These are often explained in the course outline or in class. You are encouraged to ask questions if you do not understand what your instructor expects of you when it comes to acknowledging sources used in course work or assignments.
- The work you do for a course must be unique to that course. Submitting an assignment that has already been graded in another course constitutes plagiarism unless you have sought and obtained the permission of the instructor in whose course you are currently enrolled.
- If you are unsure whether or not to reference a source, err on the side of caution and do so anyway, as the sanctions for plagiarism may be quite severe.
Techniques to Avoid Unintentional Plagiarism
- Avoid cutting and pasting paragraphs or portions from electronic sources directly into your document. While this may seem like an efficient strategy, many students get confused and come to believe that the words in question are, in fact, their own. Rather, either cut and paste the entire phrase and place quotation marks around it, noting the URL, or print the page (which includes the URL) for your future use.
- Become intimately acquainted with the citation reference guide most commonly used by your faculty.
- Retain all reference and research materials, including previous versions of your work.
- Practice three-column note taking: in the first, capture the entirety of the text being used, in the second, attempt to paraphrase it, and in the third, relay your own impressions.
- Develop good academic and time management skills, and avoid procrastination.