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What is Plagiarism?
The act of plagiarism is the use of another’s work, intellectual property or ideas without proper citation and with the intention to claim them as your own. While the copying of written material is often thought to be the hallmark of plagiarism, there are also lesser-known examples of it: cheating, working with another person who is unapproved for the project, and even using an old paper you wrote for a new course can be considered acts of plagiarism. Each school can have its own specific definition of plagiarism, which can usually be found in the “academic integrity” section of its code of conduct handbook. Plagiarism is discouraged in all corners of academia, and the consequences for it can range from being asked to rewrite a paper to being expelled from school.
How To Avoid Plagiarism
One of the first ways to avoid plagiarism is to become familiar with the differences between quoting and paraphrasing. You should also make sure to know how to properly cite or attribute your sources. Completely understand the material you are writing about, so that you don’t have to rely on someone else’s ideas about the subject to put forth your own. Most of all, you should work on forming your own original ideas on top of the facts you have learned in class. Of course, other ways to avoid plagiarism are to resist the temptations to share work and use papers that were written by someone else. Using an online plagiarism checker to scan and assess your papers can also help you identify issues with them before you have to turn them in for grading.
- How to Avoid Plagiarism: Office of the Provost: Northwestern University offers a lengthy guide about plagiarism, which includes a number of examples.
- Plagiarism and the Proper Use of Sources: Harvard University offers an interactive guide that educates students about plagiarism and provides tips on how to avoid it. Online tutorials can help visual learners.
- Plagiarism: What It Is and How to Avoid It: Indiana University sets forth a plagiarism guide, including examples and specific cases. It also includes a test at the end to help students understand what plagiarism is.
- Avoiding Plagiarism: The University of Arizona gives a simple overview of plagiarism and tips to avoid it. An interactive tool designed to teach students about accidental plagiarism is included.
- How to Avoid Plagiarism: Introduction: The University of Maryland provides a module that lets students intensively study each guideline for plagiarism that the university has set forth.
- Avoiding Plagiarism: MIT’s Program in Writing and Humanistic Studies discusses what plagiarism is, gives some examples of different types of it, and provides reasons why students should avoid the intentional version.
- The Writer’s Handbook: How to Avoid Plagiarism: The University of Wisconsin provides a lengthy handbook about plagiarism that can be downloaded.
- Avoiding Plagiarism, Self-Plagiarism, and Other Questionable Writing Practices (PDF): This guide attempts to inform students about the best ethical writing practices.
- Tips for Avoiding Plagiarism: These are some numbered tips that can also serve as a checklist when checking your paper for plagiarism.
- Avoid Plagiarism: This completely interactive tool teaches students about plagiarism and ways to avoid it.
Fortunately, there a number of plagiarism checker tools available on the Internet that can help you assess your work before you turn it in. While some tools are free, others can require a subscription service. Their accuracy levels can also vary, so it’s important to research which ones have the best results before using them to scan your paper. Some checkers can even specialize in certain types of academic writing, and can run your paper through subject-specific databases. Below, you’ll find a number of free plagiarism tools to help you scan and check your papers, as well as some of the most popular per-fee services.
- Dupli Checker: This is a free, online plagiarism checker.
- The Plagiarism Checker: This is a plagiarism checker designed for teachers who want to check their students’ work. There is a subscription service that provides a more powerful detection service.
- Check For Plagiarism: This plagiarism tool makes sure that content can pass Google’s plagiarism tests.
- Advanced Plagiarism Checker: This is a free, online plagiarism checker that lets users choose how sensitive the checks should be.
- Check for Plagiarism on the Web for Free: This plagiarism checker has two modes that can be used by teachers or authors.
- Free Plagiarism Checker Online: This free plagiarism checker supports over 190 different languages.
- Article Checker: This simple, plagiarism checker is meant to check short articles for similar ones on the internet. Google and Yahoo search engines can be specified.
- Viper: This plagiarism checker is a program that can be downloaded onto a computer.
- TurnItIn: Designed by graduates of UC Berkeley, this plagiarism checker helps students create original papers of college-level quality.
- Ithenticate: This plagiarism checker was designed for those who want to check their scholarly research. It’s also good for other types of professional writing.
Plagiarism In Schools
Although each school may deal with the consequences of plagiarism differently, almost all treat it as a serious offense. The punishment can range from receiving no credit for the plagiarized paper to complete expulsion from a school. In some instances, departments may allow a student to rewrite his or her paper, but at a lower grade than it would have initially earned. When attempting to dole out the proper degree of punishment, some institutions may consider the type and breadth of plagiarism committed. For example, incorrect source attribution can be considered a minor infraction, while the attempt to pass off an entire paper as his or her own can be considered a serious infraction. To avoid these instances of plagiarism, many teachers are now encouraged to educate their students at the start of a course about the act, and to set forth a strict policy that both defines and lists the consequences of plagiarism.
- Plagiarism Online in Middle and High School: This website considers plagiarism when it happens in middle school and high school.
- Student Consequences for Plagiarism: This is a short definition of plagiarism, and the type of consequences that a student can expect by engaging in it.
- Consequences of Plagiarism: Strayer University lists the consequences of plagiarism at their school in an easy-to-understand format.
- Academic Integrity and Plagiarism: Texas A&M lists consequences for plagiarism, and also resources for better writing.
- Plagiarism & Academic Dishonesty: Consequences: Rutgers clearly outlines the consequences for plagiarism, and even uses “levels” to help define it and its subsequent punishment.
- ASU Student’s Plagiarism Risks More Than Her Own Career: A student who plagiarized work loses her college degree and is fired from her job.
- New York University’s Plagiarism Guidelines for Instructors: In these guidelines, instructors are encouraged to place the same blurb about academic integrity on their syllabuses, warning students about dismissal at the university if they are caught plagiarizing.
- Understanding the Consequences of Plagiarism: Franklin University offers a short section on the consequences of plagiarism.
- Understanding Issues of Plagiarism: Fresno State outlines the issues of plagiarism, its many different forms, and copyright violation.
- Consequences of Plagiarism: Virginia Tech outlines the consequences of plagiarism for students while giving examples of famous cases.