What is Plagiarism?

Plagiarism is defined as the act of taking the work (words, ideas, concepts, data, graphs, artistic creation) of another whether that work is paraphrased or copied in verbatim or near verbatim form and offering it as one’s own without giving credit to that source. The word is derived from the Latin word plagiarius (kidnapper) and means the “false assumption of authorship, the wrongful act of taking the product of another person’s mind and presenting it as one’s own.”

  • Using other’s ideas, information, or expressions without acknowledgement is intellectual theft
  • Passing off another person’s ideas, information, or expressions as your own to get a better grade or gain some kind of advantage is fraud

Plagiarism is both stealing and lying (claiming implicitly that the words or ideas are your own). It also shows contempt and disrespect for your professor and other students. When sources are used in a paper, acknowledgment of the original author or source must be made through appropriate citation/attribution and, if directly quoted, quotation marks or indentations must be used. Improper acknowledgment of sources in essays, papers, or presentations is wrong.