How to Avoid Plagiarism: In 5 Easy Steps
Plagiarism is something we hear about often but do we really know what it means.
You might hear the word use by your professor as part of a warning and something you should avoid but how do you do this let’s take a look first what is plagiarism. Plagiarism occurs when a writer uses someone else’s language ideas or other original material without acknowledging its source whether you intend to or not you are stealing someone else’s ideas here’s an example you’re writing a paper for your English class and you find a great quote from a book that fits perfectly into your paper you copy and paste a paragraph into your paper but you don’t give credit to the source this is plagiarism to avoid plagiarizing or passing someone else’s intellectual property off as your own be sure to include a citation after the quote plagiarism can be either intentional or unintentional. So we need to look at ways to avoid being an information thief here are five easy steps to help you avoid plagiarism number one use original ideas and opinions write your own thoughts and explanations regarding your research topic if you do need to use information from another source be sure it is relevant and if you do use it make sure you cite it number to paraphrase when you’re using information from a source it’s a good idea to put it into your own words.
However you still need to cite the source even though you’re paraphrasing information that is common knowledge for example the sky is blue does not need to be cited number three cite your sources as I’ve already said you need to cite information that you get from a source whether it is from a book journal articles blog or website you need to cite it here is an example of a citation and the parentheses.
You can see that both the publication year and page number are given there are different ways of doing this depending on the citation style you’re using sometimes it can be difficult to tell when a citation is needed when in doubt cite it.
Number four use quotation marks if you’re putting information into your paper that you took directly from a source be sure to put quotation marks around that information this tells the reader that you’re quoting directly from your source help number five ask for help if you’re just not sure when and how to cite your information ask for help there are several options available to you to get help with your citation if you’re on campus you can visit ace aces southeastern academic center for enrichment you can also ask a librarian such as myself and you can even use online tools such as Purdue owls website which offers resources for both MLA and APA you can also use this hero Zotero is a free tool which helps you collect organize and cite your sources you can find more tutorial videos on our youtube channel or visit us online at library seu edu you.