What Counts as Plagiarism?
Plagiarism can be intentional or unintentional. It often occurs because the process of citation can be confusing, technology makes copy + paste so easy, and knowing exactly what to cite is not always easy! You can avoid unintentional plagiarism by learning how to cite material and keeping track of sources in your notes. Give yourself plenty of time to process sources so you don’t plagiarize by mistake. Here are some examples of plagiarism:
- Submitting a paper written by someone else.
- Using words and phrases from the source text and patching them together in new sentences.
- Failing to acknowledge the sources of words or information.
- Not providing quotation marks around a direct quotation. This leads to the false assumption that the words are your own.
- Borrowing the idea or opinion of someone else without giving the person credit
- Restating or paraphrasing a passage without citing the original author
- Borrowing facts or statistics that are not common knowledge without proper acknowledgement
|Obvious Plagiarism||Less Obvious Plagiarism|
Why Should You Care?
Being honest and maintaining integrity in your academic work is a sign of character and professionalism. In addition to maximizing your own learning and taking ownership of your academic success, not plagiarizing is important because
- Your professors assign research projects to help you learn. You cheat yourself when you substitute someone else’s work for your own.
- You don’t like it when someone else takes credit for your ideas, so don’t do it to someone else.
- Plagiarizing comes with consequences. Depending on the offense and the institution, you may be asked to rewrite plagiarized work, receive a failing grade on the assignment, fail the entire course, or be suspended from the university.
- Professors use search engines, databases, and specialized software to check suspicious work, so you will eventually get caught.