Avoiding Plagiarism

The most effective way to avoid plagiarizing is to budget enough time for thorough research, take careful notes, and allow enough time for paper revisions.

Please see Handouts for Students for tips on research and writing, how to paraphrase and quote, how to evaluate Internet sources, and a definition of common knowledge. For additional help and suggestions please see Terminology and Research and Writing Help.

Other tips include:

  • Talk to a librarian! They are there to help you with your research and they also offer *free* instruction sessions.
  • If you are unsure of whether or not to cite a source, err on the side of caution and cite it.
  • Take the time to learn how to properly paraphrase, summarize, and quote.
  • When taking notes always write down the complete bibliographic information and always directly quote. This way there won't be any confusion about where your sources came from and what was directly quoted and what wasn't.
  • If you are having problems narrowing down your topic or if need of additional guidance, make an appointment with your professor. Being confused by, or not understanding a concept is not an academic offense. Plagiarism or cheating is. Faculty members prefer that students talk to them.
  • A low or failing grade is always preferable to a permanent academic offense on a transcript!
  • Remember that you are responsible for your own learning.

Online Guides and Articles on How to Avoid Plagiarism

Middle Georgia State University Resources

  • Student Code of Conduct
  • Office of the Dean of Students
  • Student Success Center (SSC)
  • Library
  • Your Professor

Information on this plagiarism website used and adapted with permission from the University of Alberta Libraries Learning Services.