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APA Guide: Plagiarism

Defining Plagiarism

What is plagiarism?

“To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own : use (another's production) without crediting the source.”

Plagiarism. In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary (2010). Retrieved from

Types of plagiarism


  • Mixing words or ideas from an unacknowledged source in with your own words or ideas.
  • Mixing together uncited words and ideas from several sources into a single work.
  • Mixing together properly cited uses of a source with uncited uses.

Direct Plagiarism

  • A phrase or passage that is copied word for word, but not quoted.


  • Rephrasing another person’s work and inserting into your own work without acknowledging the original source.

Insufficient Acknowledgement

  • Half crediting source; whereby you acknowledge the author’s work the first time, but continue to use the author’s words without giving additional attribution.


Self-plagiarism: If you use writing from a previous assignment or context, you must ask for the facilitator's approval. All writing must acknowledge its source, even if that source is you, to avoid plagiarism. 

For more information please see the Office of Research Integrity's statement here:

Avoid Plagiarism by Paraphrasing

How to Paraphrase:

  1. Read the original article
  2. Take notes and write down what is important for you
  3. Integrate the information into your own argument
  4. Cite the author
  5. Look again at the original work to make sure that you didn’t plagiarize.


To avoid plagiarism, you have to change more than a few words. It has to be your thoughts about the author's ideas, and the author needs to cited.


Paraphrasing, summarizing, and plagiarizing on Purdue University’s OWL.

Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial

Avoiding Plagiarism

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