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  • How to Avoid Plagiarism: About Plagiarism

    Bad idea. Don't plagiarize, ever.

    Give credit where credit is due.

    What is plagiarism?

    Plagiarism is "the action or practice of taking someone else's work, idea, etc., and passing it off as one's own" or also know as "literary theft" (OED Online).

    It is a form of lying, cheating, theft, and fraud.

    It is not a form of copying and borrowing -- that is a common misconception. 

    Plagiarism is a very serious offense.


    "plagiarism, n." OED Online, Oxford University Press, March 2022, Accessed 9 March 2022.

    What is considered plagiarism?

    Many things can be considered plagiarism. Here are a few examples (From

    • "Turning in someone else's work as your own
    • "Copying words or ideas from someone else without giving credit
    • "Failing to put a quotation in quotation marks
    • "Giving incorrect information about the source of the quotation
    • "Changing words but copying the sentence structure of a source without giving credit
    • "Copying so many words or ideas from a source that it makes up the majority of your work, whether or not you give credit"


    “What Is Plagiarism?”, Turnitin LLC., 2017, Accessed 9 March 2022.

    Always cite your sources

    Most plagiarism cases are avoided if you cite your sources!

    If you are ever unsure if you are plagiarizing, get a second opinion. Share what you wrote -- including the source you used -- with your instructor, a librarian, a writing center staff member, or other trusted individual. 

    When in doubt, always cite your source! Check out the Citation Style Guide for how to create and format a citation.