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What is Plagiarism?

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What is plagiarism?

“To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own : use (another's production) without crediting the source.”

Plagiarism. In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary (2010). Retrieved from


Types of plagiarism

  • Blending
    • Mixing words or ideas from an unacknowledged source in with your own words or ideas.
    • Mixing together uncited words and ideas from several sources into a single work.
    • Mixing together properly cited uses of a source with uncited uses.
  • Direct Plagiarism
    • A phrase or passage that is copied word for word, but not quoted.
  • Paraphrasing
    • Rephrasing another person’s work and inserting into your own work without acknowledging the original source.
  • Insufficient Acknowledgement
    • Half crediting source; whereby you acknowledge the author’s work the first time, but continue to use the author’s words without giving additional attribution.


Avoid Plagiarism 

        If you use someone else’s idea, cite them. If you use someone else’s words, use quotation marks and cite them.


How to Paraphrase:

  1. Read the original article
  2. Take notes and write down what is important for you
  3. Integrate the information into your own argument
  4. Cite the author
  5. Look again at the original work to make sure that you didn’t plagiarize.


To avoid plagiarism, you have to change more than a few words. It has to be your thoughts about the author's ideas, and the author needs to cited.


Paraphrasing, summarizing, and plagiarizing on Purdue University’s OWL.



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