PPlagiarism is a serious issue that can get you expelled from school if you are not careful. Although most people are aware that directly copying the work of others is something that they should avoid, they seldom realize that many people can accidentally commit acts of plagiarism without even realizing it. This is a serious problem and one that can really damage a student’s academic career unless it is disproved. To protect yourself and stay safe from accusations of plagiarism be sure to use your own words, cite your sources, and document your work. These actions will keep you out of trouble.
Whenever you write a paper be sure to use your own words. Plagiarism occurs when people copy what someone else has written, so being original is a great way to avoid it. This doesn’t mean that you can’t be inspired by someone else or are unable to use information presented by another person, but it does mean that you need to use your own writing style to convey their message. If you do use someone’s work be sure to quote them and cite the original source. Also, only use direct quotes when appropriate, otherwise use your own words.
Citing sources is a must, you need to give credit where credit is due. Aside from the fact that many professors require their students to cite material that they use, providing references makes it easier to avoid accusations of plagiarism. If someone thinks that you copied another work you can simply show them the material that you used and point out the differences between it and your own. This is a simple process and it can save a lot of time and frustration. A bibliography can really help you out if you ever find yourself in a situation where people doubt your originality.
While having citations is a great way to avoid trouble, there is also another easy way to show professors that the work you did was actually yours. Certain word processors, like Google Docs, have a built-in feature that documents exactly when changes were made to a document. This is basically a digital timestamp. Saving a copy of your work in one of these programs will make it easy to go back and show your professor that you in fact wrote your own paper. It will also provide a record of the times that you worked on it which help to verify that you did the project yourself.
Plagiarism is a serious matter, it can land you in some serious trouble. You could even get expelled if found guilty. Because of this it is important to protect yourself in a variety of ways. Writing your essay in your own words is a great tool for avoiding plagiarism. Citing your sources makes it easy to show that you did your own work and keeping your papers time stamped lets professors know that you wrote them yourself. These three simple tricks can help you make your time in school a lot easier and significantly less stressful.