It’s simple for students to get reference material and information for most research papers; however it isn’t always that simple to add additional information into your paper without having it come up as plagiarism. The good news is that there are ways you can avoid this. Even if it is accidental plagiarism, you can still suffer from the consequences.
Below are some tips to help you write your paper while ensuring it is totally free of plagiarism.
A really nice video that talks about Plagiarism. This video is a compilation of talks from Staff and students at York St John University. This video mostly applicable to students, however in general its applicable to any content marketer.
How To Avoid Plagiarism
This video describes simple ways to avoid plagiarism and need of citation in any writing work.
Plan and Take Action
Students who use a plagiarism checker to detect any similarities often find out that some parts of their work are not original. It happens because they blindly rush into it without a plan and after extended procrastination. Even if you don’t deliberately hand in your paper with other people’s words in it, procrastinating and not planning efficiently can cause you to get careless with regard to MLA citation and using a paid or free detector to check your work.
Using the Exact Words of an Author
You can avoid plagiarism by simply making sure your sources are cited or quoted. If you copy words from the source of the original creator, be sure to put quotation marks around them. You should use author’s exact words only if they strengthen your argument or message you are trying to communicate. Always cite sources even if you use quotes. You can use a citation generator to help you with this. Whether you are taking a test, writing an APA paper or compiling bibliography, there is more than just the format that you need to concern yourself with. If you borrow someone’s work, cite it. This includes data, graphs, maps, tables and more.
Cite Your Own Material
Yes, you should cite your own work too if you have already used it somewhere else. Availing of work that has already been used before is called self-plagiarism and can still get you in hot water. You want to go a totally anti plagiarism way about any work, even if you are the original maker of the words. To avoid this mistake, cite your own work too.
Another way to avoid being flagged for plagiarism is to include a reference page of cited works at the end of your paper. This is a form of MLA citation and should meet your educational institution’s formatting guidelines. This is fairly specific information that includes the author’s title, date of publication and source.
Print Electronic Sources and Document Them
Although it’s simple enough to have a stack of journal articles or books on your desk that you can reference when needed, it’s also essential that you keep track of all electronic sources you use. If you turn a journal article into PDF, store it electronically in a folder on your PC where it’s easy to find.
Log any websites that you typically reference in a separate document from your paper that you are writing so you can return to it easily for citation.
Print all relevant website pages you use and be sure to take note of the entire URL and date when you printed it. Since electronic sources can be easily deleted, be sure to check them before directing your readers to them. If you notice one of your electronic sources was deleted or disappeared before you submit your work, you will have to make the decision if you wish to keep that particular source in your paper. You want your work to be completely unique, so, add value for the reader and by all means cite properly.