Plagiarism Resources


From the Clemson University Undergraduate Announcements:

B. Academic dishonesty is further defined as:

  1. Giving, receiving or using unauthorized aid on any academic work;
  2. Plagiarism, which includes the intentional or unintentional copying of language, structure or ideas of another and attributing the work to one’s own efforts;

Why is plagiarism such a big deal?
You are attending college in order to learn a field of study and become a professional. Professionals do their own work – they could be fired if they “borrowed” work from others. Plagiarism is the lazy way to produce work; you are using someone else’s ideas instead of your own. But the whole reason you came to Clemson is to learn, and we measure that learning by having you write – in your own words – what you understand.

I always paraphrased in my high school papers. Isn’t that good enough?
No, because what most students mean by “paraphrasing” is taking actual writing of others and rearranging words. Your instructors expect you to read, learn and assimilate ideas. Then, when you write you are using your own voice, choosing your own words and putting down what you understand. You don’t do that with “paraphrasing.”

Okay, I need some examples so that I understand what you mean!
Go to these Web sites, which have good examples for you to follow:

Do’s and Don’ts (University of California, Davis)
Examples (Indiana University)  

But I can re-use my own essays, right?
No. Self-plagiarism is still plagiarism – you did not do the work as required by your instructor. Make sure you talk with your instructor about using parts of work done for previous classes.

Additional Resources:

Guidelines for Students (University of Pretoria)
Plagiarism in Colleges in USA (Ronald B. Standler)
Information from a Clemson Professor
Avoiding Plagiarism (University Libraries)