Plagiarism comes in many forms. One of the most popular form is hidden in how the larger public defines it. Plagiarism comes with an obvious and most expected definition of copying someone else’s ideas and works and submitting them as your own. Copying the work of another person is not the main definition or the main aspect of what constitutes plagiarism. Every time you use another person’s material in different words and submit it without proper acknowledgement and referencing, you will be said to have committed plagiarism. Therefore, when writing an assignment or an article or any form of writing, citing the source should be remembered as one of the ways to avoid intellectual theft. Very many students have been left confused on whether they should still give credit to an author even after paraphrasing the document. It is for the reason of not having them confused any more that we insist that changing another person’s words does not still qualify your work as an original development.
As a matter a fact, a paraphrased paper can still be found with instances of plagiarism when there is no proper citation. Learners are even more confused when using direct quotes on a paraphrased document. They think that giving credit to an author should only be done when direct quotes are used. Citation should not only be done when one has used direct quotes. Sentences and quotes that have changed words also need to be referenced and by doing this you show the words are yours but the idea is borrowed. If you are still not sure about when to use citations and references after paraphrasing a text, you can visit Yale University website on plagiarism and find useful data on how to cite to avoid theft even after changing words.
There are many other ideas that students can borrow when writing a paper. When using these ideas, you can constantly remind yourself about how important it is to avoid plagiarism and present a great argument during your course. Below is a list of information that should be remembered when seeking to stay away from plagiarism allegations;
- As a writer, always know that it is not wise to depend on a particular source. Using one source to bring out your argument makes your final paper biased and causes it to lack credibility. Therefore, writers are always advised to use a variety of sources to submit a more credible and reliable article. Using one article would make your work attract allegations of theft but the use of many sources combines different arguments into a single strong idea.
- Learn how to tell the difference between original ideas from a paper that has been researched. The moment another writer has researched information and gathered the data needed, he is able to tell the difference between the ideas that the original author had borrowed and the words that have been used to add onto his ideas. Using this strategy to avoid plagiarism will make the writer also tell the difference between what is supposed to be included in his paper and the ideas to add. At the same time, as the writer researches and gathers data, he will need to show the difference in borrowed ideas by writing down the page number in which his ideas will be borrowed from. In the case of direct quotation, the writer should also be able to tell where the information is from.
- When writing is about to start, every writer should familiarize himself with how direct quotes can be used properly. Direct quotes should not be used as a way to fill your paper or make your statement longer. Instead, direct quotes should be used when you need to make a emphasis. Even after using the quote, always make sure you explain the quote using your own words and still cite in the end because the use of direct quoting is a clear indication that these are not your words. A quote can also be used when you need to revise an original statement or change the meaning of another sentence. There are many other reasons in which quoted phrases can be used all you have to remember is to always cite.
All the strategies mentioned above are very vital when one needs to compose an exceptional paper because adhering to the steps above makes one sure of not having the issue of plagiarism take place. Another strategy to always remember is that a writer should maintain one particular style of citation. There are websites, books and authors in the market who have composed guidelines on the different citation style and how to use each format to maintain proper flow. Apart from looking at online sources and books, you can feel free to consult with your professor on which style should be used and the proper way of citing using that particular style. Are you confused about proper citation, you can rely on your professor or an online source any time. There are many faces to plagiarism and fortunately many ways to deal with the issue. The writer only needs to seek as much information as possible to make his paper reliable.