What is Plagiarism?

How do you find paraphrasing so far? For many students, paraphrasing could be an effective tool when conducting research for their school assignments or reports. but paraphrasing is not just mere re-wording or writing in your own words what you read.  It involves citing the author or the source where you obtained your information.
For example, when asked to research for a certain topic, a student would naturally go to the library and just copy portions of the book that discusses the assigned topic.This practice does not promote learning, but rather plagiarism.

Reference for clip art: http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-don-t-copy-stamp-image11977845

Plagiarism means taking ideas that are not your own, without acknowledging the source of the idea. It is the act of taking another person's writing, conversation, song, or even idea and passing it off as your own. It is a form of stealing.
Read the examples below to understand more about plagiarism and to learn what you should and shouldn't do when paraphrasing and most importantly, to avoid plagiarism:


Example Paraphrase 1. "Police:  Man breaks into Austin meat business, naps” 

Original source: "AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Police have arrested a 28-year-old man who they say broke into an Austin business, stole a couple of sausages and fell asleep.”
Bad ExampleIncorrect: A 28-year-old man in Austin, Texas didn't break into a business and run, like most criminals. Instead, he took several sausages then simply fell asleep inside the business.

Explanation:

The paraphrase above uses original wording and sentence structure, but it is plagiarized because it does not cite the original source. Below is an example of a correct paraphrase.
Good exampleCorrect: A 28 year old man in Austin, Texas didn't break into a business and run, like most criminals. Instead, he took several sausages then simply fell asleep inside the business ("Police: Man breaks into Austin meat business, sleeps”).

          Explanation:

The paraphrase above uses original wording and sentence structure, it is not plagiarized because it cites the original source.  Look at how the sentence acknowledges where the information was obtained by citing the title of the article.


Example Paraphrase 2. "Police: Man fled crash to avoid yelling girlfriend”

Original source: "VINELAND, N.J. (AP) -- Police in New Jersey say a man told officers he fled the scene of an auto accident because he 'didn't want to deal with his girlfriend yelling at him.'”
Bad ExampleIncorrect: New Jersey police state a man said he left the scene of a car accident because he didn't want to deal with his girlfriend yelling at him ("Police: Man fled crash to avoid yelling girlfriend”).

          Explanation:

The paraphrase only changes a few words. Most of the words and sentence structure are too close to the original for this to be a good paraphrase. By changing a few words from the original, that doesn't mean that the information you gave is not anymore considered plagiarized.
Good exampleCorrect: A man in New Jersey seemed to think leaving the scene of a car crash and being arrested was a better option than listening to his girlfriend yell. He told the police he fled because he didn't want to listen to her yell at him ("Police: Man fled crash to avoid yelling girlfriend”).

          Explanation:

The paraphrase changes most of the words from the original source. Most of the words and sentence structure are now original which qualifies this as a good paraphrase.


Examples obtained from https://www.kibin.com/essay-writing-blog/examples-of-paraphrasing/


Reference for clip art: http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/business-man-with-light-bulb-44874607


So, if you have to do a research, read the topic and write your assignment using your own words but never forget to cite your reference or source. If you have found information that is perfect for your assignment or research. Read it and put it into your own words. Make sure that you do not copy more than two words in a row from the text you have found. Follow the tips in paraphrasing provided in this lesson.


Last modified: Tuesday, 21 June 2016, 3:34 AM