To avoid plagiarism, you must give credit when:

  • You use another person's ideas, opinions, or theories.
  • You use facts, statistics, graphics, drawings, music, etc., or any other type of information that does not comprise common knowledge.
  • You use quotations from another person's spoken or written words.
  • You paraphrase another person's spoken or written words.

To avoid plagiarism, students should follow these writing guidelines:
  • Begin the writing process by stating your ideas; then go back to the author's original work.
  • Use quotation marks and credit the source (author) when you copy exact wording.
  • Use your own words (paraphrase) instead of copying directly when possible.
  • Even when you paraphrase another author's writings, give credit to that author.

To avoid plagiarism, students may use the following sources:
  • Direct quotations that are placed within quotation marks or indented in block form, with sources acknowledged within the student’s own text or in in-text notes, footnotes, or endnotes; or acknowledged orally.
  • Paraphrases and summaries of another’s words with acknowledgment of the source.
  • Ideas in general taken from a source if the source is adequately acknowledged.
  • References and resources such as dictionaries and textbooks to correct and revise work. Students may also consult their professors, librarians, Writers' Room tutors, or others for help with correcting and revising their work, but they may not have another person correct and revise their work in its entirety.
  • Keyboarding or typing that is performed by another person. The keyboarder may not, however, change the content, organization, spelling, punctuation, words, or ideas of the writer.
If the form of citation and reference are not correct, the attribution to the original author is likely to be incomplete. Therefore, improper use of style can result in plagiarism. Get a style manual and use it!



Any violation of these principles may result in a serious academic penalty, ranging from receiving a warning, to redoing
the assignment, to receiving a grade of F for the assignment, to failing the course, to expulsion from the university. All cases of plagiarism must be reported to Student Services. Students have the right to due process, as outlined in the Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct.


The following flowchart should help guide your choices: