Plagiarism

PLAGIARISM IS CHEATING

  • To plagiarize means to take or use another person’s ideas, writings, or inventions as one’s own. Plagiarism is both unethical and illegal.
  • A writer cannot copy direct quotations without providing quotation marks and without acknowledging the source.
  • When you put your name on a paper, you imply that the information, wording, and organization of that paper are yours. You are obliged to credit the source of any fact or idea that is not your own.

YOU ARE PLAGIARIZING IF YOU:

  • Paraphrase material without properly introducing and documenting it
  • Do not paraphrase sufficiently even if you document the source
  • Quote material without using quotation marks or properly introducing or documenting it
  • Use information from the Internet or other electronic sources without giving complete and correct documentation
  • Turn in a paper written by someone else in whole or in part as your own work
  • Have a friend or a relative write all or part of your essay or if you purchase all or part of your essay from the Internet or anywhere else

PENALTIES FOR PLAGIARISM CAN INCLUDE FAILURE OF THE COURSE OR DISMISSAL FROM THE UNIVERSITY.

TIPS FOR AVOIDING PLAGIARISM

  • Introduce every quotation and paraphrase by citing in the text of your paper the name of the source of the material used.
  • Place quotation marks around all directly quoted material or block-indent longer quotations.
  • Rewrite paraphrased material so that it is faithful to the original but does not use key words and phrases without placing them inside quotation marks. Don’t simply re-arrange sentences.
  • Document fully and accurately all source material used.
  • Include on the “Works Cited” page every source that you refer to in the paper.

Public Domain Information Versus Controversial or Specialized Information

You do NOT have to cite sources for:

  • Public domain information which is not debatable and is available commonly. For example, you do NOT have to cite sources for the following: The earth is spherical or The United States gained independence from Britain in 1776 .
  • Anything general which you could have ascertained from reading the work. For example, Moll Flanders is the title character of Defoe’s novel of the same name. However, you do have to cite particular ideas or quotations from sources; see (2) below.
  • Anything I say in class, if you trust my judgment.

You HAVE to cite sources for:

  • Any information that may be debatable or controversial. For example, you HAVE to cite sources for the following: The United States won the war of 1812 against Britain or Shakespeare was born on April 23, 1564.
  • Any quotation or paraphrase you use from a particular source. For example, Although Moll Flanders testifies to her moral conversion (289), she still lies to her Lancashire husband about her wealth, which is composed of all stolen goods (312).
  • Anything you borrow from another student, professor, class, or textbook.

Reprinted with permission from Dr. Susan Hillabold

Read Purdue and Purdue North Central’s Plagiarism Statements