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What is Plagiarism?

From the 1995 Webster’s II New College Dictionary, “to plagiarize” means

  • "To steal and use (the ideas or writings of another) as one’s own."
  • "To take passages or ideas from and use them as one’s own." (p. 841)

From Metropolitan Community College’s Procedures Memorandum on Student Conduct and Discipline (http://www.mccneb.edu/procedures/V-4_Student_Conduct_and_Discipline.pdf), plagiarism is “…representing another’s ideas as one’s own in connection with a matter upon which the student or another’s performance is being or will be evaluated.”

Put simply, plagiarism is stealing. It is passing someone else’s work off as your own, and that action, by itself, says a great deal about you and the kind of person you are.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t use another’s ideas or words, but it does mean that you need to “cite” or give proper credit to the person or source from whom you are borrowing.

Some web pages that will give you additional information are listed below.


Commercial sites:

The Essay Verification Machine 2 (EVE2)

Glatt Plagiarism Services, Inc.



Especially for students:


Avoiding Plagiarism (The University of Arizona Library)

Citing Sources and Avoiding Plagiarism (Duke University Libraries)

A Note on Plagiarism (Augusta State University Department of Sociology, Social Work & Criminal Justice)

Plagiarism: How to Avoid It (A Research Guide for Students)


Especially for instructors:

Ehrlich, Heyward. "Plagiarism and Anti-Plagiarism"

Harris, Robert. "Anti-Plagiarism Strategies for Research." VirtualSalt.

Indiana University, Bloomington Writing Tutorial Services.

Kimbel Library, Coastal Carolina University

O’Keefe Library: Best information on the Net: Faculty resources.

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