Plagiarism -- is the act of using another person's ideas or expressions in your writing without acknowledging the source. It "…is to give the impression that you have written or thought something that you have in fact borrowed from another." (See the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers , [New York: Modern Language Association, 1988], p. 21.)


  • To use a specific idea, detail, illustration drawn from a particular source without reference in a footnote and bibliography.
  • To use general background for an assignment from a book, article, or other source which is not acknowledged.
  • To submit another person's paper, project, or homework as one's own.
  • To paraphrase without citing the sources.
  • To use even a brief phrase exactly quoted from a source without putting it in quotation marks or indenting it, and citing it.
  • To use material from residence or fraternity files and turn it in as one's own work.
  • To use information or material from the Internet without citing the sources.

If you use another person's ideas or expressions without proper citation you have committed plagiarism. It is important that in rewriting you demonstrate your own synthesis of ideas and fully credit your original source. Paraphrasing causes students the most difficulty. When you change words in a sentence, but the idea remains the same, you must cite your source.


See Also:

Academic Misconduct
Misuse of Computing Facilities


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