Plagiarism, defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, is "the action or practice of taking someone else's work, idea, [words, cartoon, graph, chart, music, PowerPoint] etc., and passing it off as one's own."
How do I avoid plagiarizing?
- Be clear about what constitutes plagiarism
- Document all sources used for quotes, statistics, charts, graphs, ideas, etc.
- Know which citation style is required and follow the style manual's examples
- Learn how to correctly document another's words and ideas
- Meet with your instructor
- Practice using RefWorks to manage and organize your research!
- Talk with a librarian
- Work with a writing coach at the Writing Center
How do I correctly quote and paraphrase another author?
- Quoting = incorporating another author's exact words, sentences, or paragraphs into your own writing ; use quotes and document the source
- Paraphrasing = utilizing another's words or ideas and rewriting them as you incorporate them into your own paper; quotes not required but documentation is
- Summarizing = making broad, general observations regarding a text or source; provide documentation as to the source
What citation styles are used at SMC?
Subject disciplines often use citation styles prescribed by their professional associations. Contact your professor to determine the required style for your courses.
- APA (American Psychology Association): Social Sciences including: Psychology, Education, Business
REF BF76.7 C66 Concise Rules of APA Style
REF BF76.7 P83 Publication Manual of the APA
APA Style Tips
- MLA (Modern Language Association): Humanities including: Art, Languages, Music, and History
REF LB 2369.G53
- Chicago Manual of Style: Political Science, History (allows for footnotes)
REF Z 253.U69
- Turabian: Range of disciplines for college papers (allows for footnotes)
Why do people plagiarize? Excuses, excuses!
- It’s easy, especially in the electronic environment
- You’re in a hurry—why not cut a few corners?
- You want to impress your teachers with your awesome writing and thinking
- Everybody does it sometime—nobody gets caught
- You’re not sure when you should cite
- You’re not sure how to cite properly
- Citing is tedious—too many picky details
"Plagiarism." Oxford English Dictionary. 2006 Draft Revision. England: Oxford University
Press, 2007. Saint Michael's College, Colchester, VT. 28 May 2007
Wilhoit, Stephen. “Helping Students Avoid Plagiarism.” College Teaching 42 (Fall 1994)
Writing a Great Research Paper. 4, Plagiarism & Other Pitfalls. Dir. Karl Weber.
Videocassette. Video Aided Instruction, 2007.
Maintained by Marilyn Scoville