“… there is no new thing under the sun.” (Eccl. 1:9b )
Plagiarism
By
Miss T.
Reference Librarian
Institutional Copyright Specialist
© Janet Tillman/The Master’s College, 2007, permission is granted for non-profit educational use; any
reproduction or modification should include this statement.
Plagiarism
 Ecc 1:9 is true of research as
well as life in general.
 All research and every idea
is influenced by the research
and ideas from the past.
 All that we know today can
in some way be credited to
others.
PREFACE
Plagiarism in Cultural Context
“Many cultures do not
recognize Western notions of
plagiarism, which rests on a
belief that … ideas can be
owned …
… In many countries outside the
United States…using the words
and ideas of others without
attribution*! is considered a sign
of deep respect …” (Lunsford
2003, 397)
* Attribution: acknowledging the author for his/her work;
giving credit to an author for his/her work
! Highlighting and underlining is mine.
However, in academic
writing in the United States,
you need to give credit for all
the materials you use with a
few exceptions like common
knowledge. (Lunsford 2003,
397)
INTRODUCTION
When you put your name on a
paper you are declaring that
you are the author of all the
words in the paper except those
clearly indicated as quotations.
(Harris 2001, 136-138)
This is key to understanding why
phrases and summaries are
considered plagiarism, if you
don’t cite them properly.
Outline
• Reasons for Research Writing &
Citing
• Plagiarism: What it is
• Plagiarism: What it is not
• Types of Plagiarism
Outline
• Causes of Accidental Plagiarism
• Avoiding Plagiarism
• Importance of Citing Sources
• Consequences of not Citing
Sources
Outline
• What to Cite
• What not to Cite
• How to Cite
• How Much to Cite
Outline
• Protect Your Own Intellectual
Property*
• A Word About Copyright
• Reading Resources
• Internet Resources
*intellectual property (related to the law) a name for property
(such as patents, trademarks, and copyright material) which is
the product of invention or creativity, and which does not exist
in a tangible, physical form. Ideas or creations of the mind.
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
It might help you to
understand the need to
avoid plagiarism if you
understood the purpose of
the research paper in the first
place.
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• The goal of the research paper
is to express your own original
thinking. (Harris 2001, 16)
• Block quotations connected by
a few comments is NOT a
research paper. (Harris 2001, 16)
Block quotation: long quote set apart
from the main text by a space above
and below and indented on both sides
like this passage.
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• The intention is that,
“…quotations, paraphrases and
summaries should support [your]
arguments and the points [you]
are developing...”. (Harris 2001,
16)
• “…merely presenting research
material is not the goal.” (Harris
2001, 16)
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• Research papers are a
valuable educational tool for
learning to synthesize ideas,
analyze issues, present a
coherent* argument and
work with information. It is
designed to train you to think,
to teach you to learn, to
investigate as well as to cite.
(Harris 2001, 20; 22)
*related logically; fits together well
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• “…in the North American
setting, most research essays
are to be presented mostly in
your own words. …The
research essay is supposed to
make use of … research [so
that you can] present your
own analysis and arguments.”
(Badke 2003, 100)
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• “The professor in a Western
academic setting is mainly
interested in seeing how well
YOU have understood the
material. Professors do not
want you simply to repeat
what you’ve read but to
interpret what you’ve read,
expressing your own
understanding in your own
words.” (Badke 2003, 103; my
bold)(*Highlighting is mine)
Reasons for Research Writing & Citing
• “Research writing exercises your critical
thinking and your ability to collect
ideas.” (Lester 2005, 89).
• “By announcing clearly the name of a
source, you reveal the scope of your
reading and thus your credibility…”.
(Lester 2005, 89)
• “…[citations] give clear evidence of
[your] investigation into the subject,
and they enhance [your] image as a
researcher.” (Lester 2005, 89)
Plagiarism: What it is
• Plagiarism is, “The action or
practice of taking someone
else's work, idea, etc., and
passing it off as one's own…”
(OED)
• Plagiarism is the failure to give
proper credit for words or ideas
that originate with someone
else whether accidentally or
intentionally.
Plagiarism: What it is
• Whether intentional or
accidental, presenting words or
ideas as though they are yours
but in fact have come from
someone else is plagiarism.
• Plagiarism is unethical*.
* Not morally right; not honorable; not virtuous; not
decent (OED)
Plagiarism: What it is
• Presenting information as though it
were your own, whether it came from
a print or an electronic source
including the Internet, is plagiarism.
• Improperly citing sources is
plagiarism.
• Plagiarism is lying, cheating and
dishonest.
• Plagiarism is considered stealing,
fraud and literary theft.
Plagiarism
• Are you beginning to get
the idea that this is a very
serious matter in
academia?
Plagiarism: What it is not
• Plagiarism is not illegal
• Plagiarism is not a violation
of copyright law
– Copyright becomes an issue
if a large amount of material
from the same source is
copied with or without
proper attribution.
Types of Plagiarism - Intentional
• Downloading free papers off
the Internet
• Buying papers
• Copying articles from a
database and presenting it as
yours
Types of Plagiarism - Intentional
• Translating foreign language
materials into English and
presenting it as though it were
yours
• Copying papers from previous
students
• Cutting & pasting from several
sources without proper
attribution.
Types of Plagiarism – Unintentional
(could also be intentional)
• Quoting only part of the quote
and pretending the rest is yours
• Changing some words but
copying whole phrases
• Paraphrasing✶ without
attribution (giving credit to the
author)
✶ Express the meaning of someone else's words using different words. A
rewording of something written or spoken by someone else. (OED)
Types of Plagiarism – Unintentional
(could also be intentional)
• Summarizing without attribution
• Directly quoting a source but leaving
out the quotation marks or block
indentions is a form of plagiarism
• Quotations properly marked or
indented but without citations either
accidentally or intentionally is still
plagiarism
Types of Plagiarism – Unintentional
(could also be intentional)
• Improper or inadequate citing of
sources is plagiarism
• Paraphrases that are too close to
the original wording or sentence
structure even if you cite it is
plagiarism
• Thoroughly rewriting a source’s
words without attribution is
plagiarism
 Paraphrases are supposed to be
your words.
 If they are too close to the original,
you are misrepresenting the truth by
claiming the words as yours.
 When you put your name on
the paper, you are claiming
that every word in it is yours
except direct quotations.
Causes of Accidental Plagiarism
• Failure to keep track of sources
• Ideas get mixed up with your
own thoughts making it difficult
to remember which is whose
• Carelessness in note taking
• Misunderstanding of what is
plagiarism
• Ignorance of proper citing style
Causes of Accidental Plagiarism
• Using the same paper for more
than one class is not
considered plagiarism by most
professors on this campus
however, the majority of them
do not allow it without first
obtaining permission.
Avoiding Plagiarism
• Good note taking – keep track of
your sources and the notes that
come from each
• Keep your bibliography constantly
current - add each and every source
you find to your bibliography the very
first time you use it
• Number each item in your
bibliography and put the same
number along side (or before and
after) each corresponding quote,
summary or paraphrase in your notes
Avoiding Plagiarism
• Photocopy or save to your files the
portions of the books, the articles and the
Web sites that you use
– Write on the photocopy or copy/paste to files
any citation information that is not
already present
•Article: author, title of article, name of
journal, volume, issue, date, page numbers
•Book: author, title, place of publication,
publisher, date, page numbers
•Web site: author/provider, title, URL, date
last updated, date accessed
Avoiding Plagiarism
• Use Q notes – put the letter Q and the
page number before and after a
quote or a partial quote like this:
Q39 … put Q-quotes around everything you drag and drop
from electronic sources. You can supplement that … by
coloring the author’s text … or by using a different font. Just
be consistent.Q
• Insert citation information with each
new item in your notes include:
author, title, publisher, date.
• See Lipson, “Doing Honest Work in
College” pp. 34-39 for more details on
Q notes.
Avoiding Plagiarism
• Photocopy the title page and
verso* of each book that you
use
• Copy/paste footnotes and
endnotes into the text as you
are writing, while the source is
right in front of you.
• Use font styles and colors to
differentiate between sources
*The left-hand page of a book
Avoiding Plagiarism
• Use font styles and colors to
differentiate other sources from
your own work
• Ask your instructor if in doubt
about how to use or
acknowledge sources
• Refer to the Reading Resources
listed at the end of this
presentation for more help
Importance of Citing Sources
• Academic Integrity – enables us
to trust the source we use and to
demonstrate that our own work
is equally trustworthy. (Lunsford
2003, 396)
• It gives credibility to the
researcher and to the research
Importance of Citing Sources
• It shows appreciation to those
who have gone before us
• It lets your readers know where
they can find more information
• It increases your critical thinking
skills by forcing you to think
carefully about your own
research
(Lunsford 1995, 175)
Importance of Citing Sources
• “Acknowledging sources
…demonstrates to readers
that you have looked at
more than one side of an
issue, that you have
considered several points
of view.” (Lundsford 2003,
393)
Consequences of not Citing Sources
• On the other hand, “Failure
to credit sources breaks
trust with both the research
… and the readers … it
can easily destroy the
credibility of the researcher
and the research.”
(Lunsford 1995, 175)
Consequences of not Citing Sources
• Fail assignment
• Fail class
• Expelled from the institution
• Outside of school
– Loose status, position, even a job
– Degrees revoked (take back),
books withdrawn from publication
– Loss of respect
What to Cite
• Direct Quotes – exactly word
for word including spelling and
punctuation; everything must
be exactly as it appears in the
source
• Partial Quotes
• Paraphrases
What to Cite
• Summaries/Précis* (“pray-SEE”)
– to sum up; to state briefly
– concise or abridged statement;
• Judgments and opinions of
others
• Ideas gleaned (picked up) from
a source
*to make precise; summarize
What to Cite
• Facts that are not widely known
or not familiar to your readers.
• Claims that are arguable: an
author presents as fact a claim
that may or may not be true.
• If you aren’t sure, cite it.
What to Cite
• Images, statistics, charts, tables,
graphs, photographs,
illustrations and other visual
sources
• Personal interviews, help from
friends, instructors and others
• When in doubt do…cite
– Better to have it [a citation] and
not need it than to need it and not
have it.
What to Cite
• Another person’s theory,
opinions, or beliefs that are not
yours.
• Another person’s theory,
opinions or beliefs that are also
yours but you want to
demonstrate that you have
researched the information or
you want to provide support for
them. (Babione 2005, 175)
What to Cite
•“Cite ideas that are not your own …
when …
– the idea is associated with a specific
person and
– it’s new enough not to be a
part of a field’s common
knowledge.
– An informed reader might think
that you’re implying that it is
your own.” (Turabian 2007, 79)
What Not to Cite
• Common Knowledge:
information known by most
readers.
– Local or regional knowledge
shared by your readers
– Shared experiences: coursework
and lectures shared by members
of the same class
– Common factual information
found in an almanac (book of
facts), dictionary or repeatedly
occurring in many different
sources
What Not to Cite
• Your own field research
(original study), original
findings or original surveys
• Dates and facts that are
widely available
How to Cite – direct quotations
• Quotations must be marked
before and after with
quotation marks or for longer
quotes indented at both
margins
• Use a double slash(//) inside
the quote to indicate a page
break (when a quote begins
on one page and ends on
another). (Lipson 2004, 35)
How to Cite – direct quotations
• Avoid using too many
quotations. “Overuse cheapens
their value.” (Lipson 2004, 44)
• Direct quotations should be
short and few.
– Less than five lines
– Less that 20% of the paper
– No more than one per page
How to Cite – direct quotations
• When it would be impossible to
restate as effectively in your own
words. (Sorenson 1999, 109)*
• When an authority’s words carry
weight…
• When the quotation is concise…
• [When] a summary or paraphrase
causes the words to lose their
impact…
How to Cite – partial quotations
• Use the ellipsis (a series of three periods;
like this …) to indicate the omission of a
word or words. Use a fourth period to
mark the end of a sentence, if that’s
where the omission occurs.
• Use brackets [like this] to insert
your own words inside a quote
or to change a word or to
make any other editorial
additions.
How to Cite - summaries
• Even though the wording is
entirely your own you need to
cite the source
• Must keep the same tone and
the same message as the
original
• Usually about one third the
length of the original
How to Cite - paraphrases
• Use when you need to
simplify the language of a
complicated text
• Use when you need to clarify
a passage
• Be very careful to NOT slip in
phrases from the original
How to Cite - paraphrases
• The length should be about the
same as the original
• It should present the same
ideas, in the same order, keep
the same tone and deliver the
same message as the original
• Changing the order of some
words or replacing a few words
is NOT a paraphrase
How Much to Cite
• A well researched paper
should have about two
citations per page
• The number of sources used
depends on the topic, how
much you’ve studied it and
how long the paper is.
How Much to Cite
• A complex or intensely
debated issue will need more
sources to cover the differing
issues.
• A short paper or a simple
topic will only need a few
sources
(Lipson 2004, 171)
Conclusion
“If the person whose work you used
read your report, would [s/he] recognize
any of it as [his/hers], including
paraphrases and summaries, or even
general ideas or methods? If
so, you must cite that source
and enclose any sequence of …
exact words in quotation marks
or set them off in a block
quotation.” (Turabian 2007, 80)
Protect Your Intellectual Property
• Protect your notes and any drafts
you may have of your paper; both
print and electronic.
• Be careful with your passwords or
USB drives (flash drive; thumb drive) –
make sure they are secure.
• Save all your drafts and notes so you
can show where your information
came from should it become
necessary.
A Word About Copyright
• Automatic copyright – all the
research and writing you do is
automatically copyrighted the
moment it becomes tangible*.
• Email is public and copyrighted - the
original author owns the copyright
on it
• Get permission to use or forward
email sent to you or information
obtained through discussion groups
or other online forums including Web
sites.
*touchable; material; real
A word about Copyright
• Some would argue email
comes with an “implied
consent” and therefore no
permission is necessary to
duplicate. There is as yet
no case law on this issue.
Reading Resources
✶Read these
• Babione, Alexandra. “Copy Me:
Plagiarism: How to Avoid it.” In
Guiding Students from Cheating and
Plagiarism to Honesty and Integrity:
strategies for change by Ann Lathrop
and Kathleen Foss, 175-176. Westport,
CN: Libraries Unlimited, 2005
✶ ✶Badke, William B. Beyond the
Answer Sheet: Academic Success for
International Students. N.Y.: iUniverse,
Inc. 2003. pp 97-103.
✶ ✶ Buy this one! ✶ ✶
Reading Resources
• Harris, Robert A. The Plagiarism
Handbook: Strategies for
Preventing, Detecting, and
Dealing with Plagiarism. LA:
Pyrczak Publishing, 2001.
✶ Lester, James D. Writing
Research Papers: a complete
guide, 11th ed. San Francisco:
Pearson Longman, 2005. pp.88102.
Reading Resources
✶ Lipson, Charles. Doing Honest
Work in College: how to prepare
citations, avoid plagiarism, and
achieve real academic success.
Chicago: University of Chicago,
2004. pp. 32-48.
• Lunsford, Andrea and Robert
Connors. The St. Martin’s
Handbook, 3rd ed. N.Y.: St
Martin’s Press, 1995. pp. 586-606.
Reading Resources
✶ Lunsford, Andrea A. The St.
Martin’s Handbook, 5th ed. N.Y.:
Bedford / St. Martin’s, 2003. pp.
393-402.
• Markman, Roberta H., Peter T.
Markman and Marie L. Waddell.
10 Steps in Writing the Research
Paper, 4th ed. N.Y.: Barron’s
Educational Series, Inc., 1989.
pp. 119-126.
Reading Resources
• Sorenson, Sharon. The Research Paper: a
Contemporary Approach, Rev. ed. N.Y.:
AMSCO Publication, 1999. pp. 107-115.
• Turabian, Kate L. A Manual for
Writers of Research Papers,
Theses, and Dissertations:
Chicago Style for Students and
Researchers, Rev. Wayne C.
Booth and Gregory G. Colomb.
7th ed. Chicago: University of
Chicago, 2007. p. 73-80.
Internet Resources
• Plagiarism: what it is and how to
avoid it?
http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/p
amphlets/plagiarism.shtml
• Avoiding Plagiarism
http://owl.english.purdue.edu/o
wl/resource/589/01/
Internet Resources
• WPA Statement on Plagiarism
http://wpacouncil.org/node/9
• Plagiarism.org Learning
Center
http://www.plagiarism.org/
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Plagiarism - The Masters College