Avoiding Plagiarism

Plagiarism is a common problem faced by students who are just beginning the research process. The author’s words sound so much better than the students or the student may not be comfortable summarizing what has been read. 

Steps for Avoiding Plagiarism:

  1. Rewrite facts in your own words. Do not copy from the source onto your note cards. Teachers can tell through the style of writing what is student work and what is professionally done.
  2. If you do use a fact or set of facts from a source, give credit to your source in your paragraph and include an internal citation at the end of the sentence.
  3. Avoid using the same descriptive words that are found in the original text. Consult a thesaurus for synonyms.
  4. Do not use the author’s loaded word or expressions, such as "blasted", "brutal", or "wiped out".
  5. Avoid presenting only the author’s ideas. Give your own ideas based on the facts.
  6. If you do include the author’s ideas, be sure to identify the authors and give credit through an internal citation.
  7. Generally, a fact found in three or more sources is considered general knowledge and does not require a citation.