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Levy Library

Research

Avoiding Plagarism

Plagiarism is using someone else's ideas or work without giving the person credit. Plagiarism can be intentional or accidental- but either way, is not acceptable. Be aware that simply re-phrasing someone else's words, using your own words, is still plagiarism. You must always give credit to the person who originated the idea. This is done through the use of citations and bibliographies.

Here are some tips to help you give credit where credit is due:

  • Use incomplete sentences when you take notes.
  • If you do use full sentences, make sure to put the words in quotes or to use a different font so you don't get confused later on.
  • Write down the source of any information that you find, even if it is just a quick shorthand. This will help you be able to cite where you found the information.
  • Remember -- ideas need to have credit given. Even if you are presenting someone else's ideas in your own words, you still need to use a parenthetical citation or footnote/endnote to explain where you learned of this idea.
  • In addition to ideas, it is also ethical to give credit for any images or sound that you use in a presentation. In fact, if you are publishing something that is not your own original work on the internet, you legally must get permission to post it there.

Here is an excellent handout (from the publication, Education World) explaining it all.