Plagiarism at university means using another person´s text/material and making it appear as one´s own. The basic principle is that it must be clear which words and ideas are your own and what material have you incorporated from other sources. When you use someone else’s material you must always state the source. This applies whether you are paraphrasing, summarizing or quoting texts that others have written.
How do you avoid plagiarism?
- Learn how to paraphrase, summarize and quote when you are using texts others have written.
- Mark the text carefully while you are writing to make sure you know where to insert in-text references.
- Keep track of the sources you are using. Have all the information about the sources available in order to write a correct reference list.
- Use a referencing tool.
- Ask your teacher/supervisor if you are unsure.
How is plagiarism detected?
- Teachers/tutors recognize the original text when reading. Teachers' (or colleagues') words are used. The plagiarized text is well known.
- Plagiarism can be detected by using a text-matching software such as Urkund. Search engines such as Google can also be used to detect plagiarism. If a teacher suspects plagiarism, a specific text might be examined and compared together with the thesis/report.
- Language/level of writing varies within the student´s own text.