Avoiding Plagiarism

Avoiding Plagiarism


Plagiarism is the practice of using another person’s words or ideas without providing proper credit and presenting them as one’s own work.


Understanding and avoiding plagiarism will improve the quality of student’s writing and avoid academic dishonesty and fraud.


  • Keep track of and document all sources used.
  • Keep your notes, sources, and writing separate to avoid accidentally using uncited content.
  • Cite your sources. Anything that is not common knowledge or your own ideas requires a citation. When in doubt, cite it.
  • Use quotations for any words or phrases pulled directly from the source.
  • Paraphrasing must be cited. Paraphrasing changes the words and sentence structure of source material, but not the idea.
  • Make clear distinctions between your own ideas and your source’s.
  • Material from your own past work must also be cited to avoid self-plagiarism.
  • Use a plagiarism checker to compare your work against existing sources.


  • Plagiarism is not limited to text. Using media such as images, video, and music without providing credit also constitutes plagiarism.
  • Common knowledge, information generally known by the reader, does not require citation.

Level: Beginner


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