(Unoriginal wording: use quotation marks or your own language.) Related Issues:
 
 

See The Gilman Honor Code

Avoiding Plagiarism (Darling et al)
Plagiarism: What It Is and How To Recognize and Avoid It (Indiana University)
Quoting, Paraphrasing and Summarizing (Purdue OWL)
Paraphrase: Write it in your own words. (Purdue OWL)



Plagiarism
 

(from The Writing Clinic, UMBC 1975)

Plagiarism is stealing someone else's idea and passing it off as your own. It is a specific violation of the Honor Code and of your own integrity. 

When you write a paper, your instructor always considers an idea that is not noted to be your own. If you use another person's idea without giving credit, you are cheating as seriously as if you had copied answers from someone else's exam.

There are five main rules you should know so that you will not plagiarize when you write your papers.

  1. A FACT WHICH IS NOT COMMON KNOWLEDGE MUST BE NOTED.

    A fact which is common knowledge my be written without a note. We say that something is common knowledge if it is widely known by most people in our society. For example, you may write, "The United States declared independence from England in 1776" without noting your source.

  2. WHEN YOU WRITE ABOUT AN IDEA, YOU MUST MAKE CLEAR WHOSE IDEA IT IS. IF IT IS YOUR IDEA, YOU DO NOT NEED TO NOTE ITS SOURCE.

  3. IF YOU ARE WRITING ABOUT SOMEONE ELSE'S IDEA, YOU MUST NOTE ITS SOURCE.

    Examples:
    By the year 1856, San Francisco's growth was practically certain. (Lotchkin 160)
    It has been suggested that Moby Dick was nothing more than a big fish. (Merrill lecture)

  4. IF YOU WANT TO USE SOMEONE ELSE'S WORDS, YOU MUST PUT THEM IN QUOTATION MARKS AND NOTE THE SOURCE.

    Example:
    Later, F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote, "Chapter VII (the hotel scene) will never be quite up to mark-- I've worried about it too long and I can't quite place Daisy's reaction." (Fitzgerald 82)

  5. WHEN YOU USE AN AUTHOR'S IDEA WITHOUT QUOTING EXACTLY, YOU MUST MAKE SURE THAT YOU EXPRESS THE IDEA IN YOUR OWN WORDS.

    For example, your reference might have been this passage:

    "To Europe the New World always had an air of the strange and fantastic. Even the small British colonies on the East Coast shared in this atmosphere of the extraordinary, as demonstrated, for instance, by the first European description of the paradisiac city of Philadelphia...The dreams of the Old World came to life in the new." (Skard 15-16)

    You should NOT write something like this in your paper:

    There was something fantastic and strange about the New World as far as the Europeans were concerned, even in the East Coast British colonies. For example, the first European descriptions of Philadelphia said that it was a paradise. Old world dreams came true in the New World. (Skard 15-16)

    Even though you have noted the source of the idea, you have followed the source's words so closely that you are still plagiarizing. If you believe that the words the author used to state his idea are essential, you should quote them exactly. Otherwise, summarize the idea in your own words.

    According to Skard, Europeans felt that the New World was a magical place where they could fulfill their dreams. (Skard 15-16)


Using MLA Format (Purdue OWL)
The MLA Website 


Practice Exercises in Paraphrasing (Purdue OWL)

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