Why Should You Avoid Plagiarism? - Demonstrating Your Academic
ost college students know they should be honest about their
reliance on sources, but too often the citation of source material
is thought of negatively, as avoiding punishment, as not being
accused of plagiarism. Proper acknowledgment of sources also should
be thought positively because when you are honest about your use
of source material, you are demonstrating your skillful writing
Academic writers are expected to acknowledge their reliance
on other writers when they use paraphrased ideas, little known
facts, unique wording, and direct quotations from other texts.
Unfortunately, when writers do not manage research and writing
very well, desperation can make a them resort to plagiarism,which
is the theft of another person's intellectual work. Stealing the
ideas and expressions of another person is like stealing a car;
it's forbidden in academia and illegal in society.
Here's a blatant example of a student copying almost word for
word from another text:
|From "Youth and
Marijuana." The Futurist 29.1 (1995): 43-4:
|From an actual student's
|Marijuana use among
high-school seniors in 1993 rose for the first time in 14
years, according to a survey by the National Institute on
Drug Abuse(NIDA). . . . This recent increase reverses several
years of declining drug use among youths. NIDA Director Richard
Millstein says that this reversal is . . . "discouraging."
Marijuana was found to be the most commonly used illegal drug
in the United States.
||Marijuana use among
high school seniors in 1993 rose for the first time in 14
years according to a survey. This recent increase reverses
several years of declining drug use among youths. Marijuana
was found to be the most commonly used illegal drug in the
Many instructors can spot this deliberate plagiarism because the writing style
usually surpasses a desperate student's own abilities.
Most college students know they should not copy directly from their sources,
but plagiarism also can occur as a result of sloppy note-taking, careless
drafting, and excessive help.