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Academic Honesty & Plagiarism: What is Plagiarism?

Defining Plagiarism

"The action or practice of taking someone else's work, idea, etc., and passing it off as one's own; literary theft." -- Oxford English Dictionary

Unintentional Plagiarism

The most common plagiarism offenses are unintentional, so it's important to know what to avoid before you begin your paper. Some of the most common mistakes include:

  • Quoting something verbatim but not including a citation
  • Paraphrasing or summarizing another text, but not including a citation
  • Paraphrasing poorly by rearranging sentences and simply replacing certain words
  • Creating sloppy in-text citations and Works Cited pages

Avoiding these pitfalls is easy so long as you review the contents of this guide, give yourself enough time to complete an assignment, and be honest about which ideas are your own and which ideas come from others' works.

Source: Whittier College-Wardman Library
Types of Plagiarism LibGuide:

Types of Plagiarism

Source: , Accessed March 21, 2017.

Types of Plagiarism

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Intentional Plagiarism

Intentional plagiarism is often treated more severely than unintentional plagiarism. Students accused of plagiarism often admit that they knew what they were doing was wrong, but "had no choice" because they began the assignment too late or didn't prepare enough beforehand. Regardless of the circumstances, intentional plagiarism is treated very seriously. Types of intentional plagiarism include:

  • Purchasing a paper online and submitting it as your own
  • Submitting a paper given to you by a friend, classmate, or family member
  • Having someone else write a paper for you
  • Submitting a paper you already submitted in another class
  • Making up sources to cite

In each of these cases, even if you make substantial revisions, it's still considered plagiarism.

Source: Whittier College-Wardman Library
Types of Plagiarism LibGuide: