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MBIS Subject Guide

This guide provides resources on writing papers, using databases, and citing sources.

Common Forms of Plagiarism

  • Leaving out quotation marks when quoting a source text, even if you supply a citation.
  • Paraphrasing ideas, theories, or arguments from a source text without an appropriate citation.
  • Copying a paper from a source text without proper acknowledgment.
  • Buying a paper from a research service, term paper mill, or classmate.

How Do I Avoid Plagiarism?

Give credit whenever you use:

  • another person's idea, opinion, or theory
  • any facts, statistics, graphs, drawings, photographs -- any pieces of information -- that are not  common knowledge
  • quotations of another person's actual spoken or written words
  • a paraphrase of another person's spoken or written words

The only time you do not have to give credit to source material is when it provides you with ‘common knowledge’ facts.

Avoiding Plagiarism: Tips

  • When taking notes, put noticeable quotation marks around any direct quotes.
  • If you paraphrase in your notes, be sure that it is a true paraphrase, not just moving a few words around.
  • Always include the page number when you take notes – even if you paraphrase.
  • Cite every piece of information that is not a) the result of your own research, or b) common knowledge.
  • Make it clear at the beginning of sentences that what comes next is someone else's idea:
    • According to Smith...
    • Jones says...
    • In his 1987 study, Robinson proved...
  • When in doubt, provide a citation.