Brief Guidance on Plagiarism Policy
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Brief Guidance on Plagiarism Policy

Brief Guidance on Plagiarism Policy

Get back in time now. You are a student in your first year and it is one of your first serious assignments to submit. How do you make sure that your paper is written up to the high academic standards? Most probably, you start searching for nice papers on similar topics online and you find them! You might ask a question ‘Can I get in trouble for writing someone else's paper?’ and it is excellent if you have heard about plagiarism policies and penalties for such violations. Otherwise, you just steal the self-expression, views, and ideas of other authors and show academically dishonest behavior. It may happen because of your unawareness of the common rules. It does not matter! Plagiarized content cannot be accepted and there is a common policy concerning that which you should definitely know about.

Plagiarism Policy: Do Not Forget!

Only proper acknowledgement of the ideas from other sources can distinguish between stealing ideas and using the materials. Borrowing the thoughts, students face a lot of problems. A common citation and use of quotation marks can save a freshman from suspension. It is really easy to avoid penalties! First of all, in case of any doubts, it is possible to consult an instructor and get an approval of a certain part of the text or draft of the paper. It is also possible to discuss the matters before submission and maintain the principles of academic integrity, being a rightful member of the education community, not a guilty student afraid of the future.

Plagiarism Penalty: What for Is It?

The definition of plagiarism presents it as reproducing the content of previously published materials or ideas that belong to other people. It is essential for the student to know how to collect research materials and use them while writing. What is the expected result? The ideas in the assignment should be original and authentic. It is allowed for the students to discuss the matters with mentors and peers but not to copy the ideas.

Traps for the Students

  1. Unintentional plagiarism

Is unintentional plagiarism possible? Sure, it is. Nevertheless, the students should take all effort to avoid it. Using obligatory indications of the origins is a must. Some smart students may alter the original text a bit, using slightly changed organization, structure, content, or vocabulary. They believe that these transformations make them the rightful owners of the text, but it is completely wrong. You should not count on any exceptions in the policies when it goes about your future and reputation in the school.

  1. Self-plagiarism

Another case of a trap for an inexperienced student is self-plagiarism. No matter whether you are a freelance writer, a student, or a digital media manager, you cannot use the things you have written twice. A student may refer to previous ideas only of a mentor approves that. It can be a further investigation that makes the ideas deeper, but not the same research submitted in two different courses to get two grades.

As all writers care about their intellectual property, it is crucially important to use a reliable checker for plagiarism, such as to detect all issues before the paper gets to the mentor.

Huge fines are possible for copying video, media, posts, music, and copyrighted images without any permission of the owner.

Plagiarism Policy and Plagiarism Prevention

One of the easiest ways to avoid copying is to cite all the sources and incorporate only original ideas. Still, there are some other not so evident steps to take so that the paper was truly original.

  • Consultation with professors and mentors

Who can guide a student better than an instructor who knows how to deal with the assigned topic? The teacher provides a set of guidelines and the student feels safe in writing.

  • Taking class notes

Class notes are helpful as they make preparation to writing much easier.

  • Proper organization of the paper

If you brainstorm before writing to get the best ideas for mind mapping and composing an outline, it is a great way to do planning and distinguish between the sources to use and original ideas.

  • Citing the used sources

It is not possible to write academic papers full of innovative ideas in the first or second years of studies. For sure, quoting and referring to the ideas of other researchers is important in the process of learning. If all citations are formatted in the proper manner, there is no issue with plagiarism. Mind the quotation marks and mention the details of the source to avoid possible penalties.

  • Avoiding wrong paraphrasing

If you change the structure of the sentence without introducing your own idea into the sentence, you steal the text. What you do is restate the vocabulary, but not writing your own text. Every paraphrased part of the text demands citations! This is the rule everybody should keep in mind. It seems to you that if you hide the source but give the ideas of researchers as your own you will make the teacher believe you. Fortunately, an experienced mentor can see whether the student uses borrowed ideas and you will be scared of the consequences your deceit may have.

  • Proper evaluation of the sources

Is the source you want to use really relevant to your research? Does the information from it support your own idea? Are the data accurate? Take into account all those factors before you decide to refer to a certain source.

What Happens if You Plagiarize in College?

You represent the language and ideas of another author as your own. You imitate the content to use it in your paper. In that case, you have to be ready that you will be accused of plagiarizing. Get to know more about specific plagiarism policy in your college to see how the students get suspended, penalized, or even expelled for copying ideas.

Every school investigates every case of violating the plagiarism policy on the basis of transparency and confidentiality. A team of legal authorities, psychologists, and experts in social science consider the matter and take the final decision. No doubt, this crime is immoral and education regarding originality of writing is a must for everyone.

With lots of information online and availability of excellent databases, it is easy to get access to the ideas of other researchers. This is one of the reasons why plagiarism percentage has increased so fast lately. Some students plagiarize despite their understanding of potential consequences, while others commit a mistake, unaware of what they actually do. Independent work requires concentration, time, and enthusiasm. For sure, it is less time-consuming to steal the ready ideas, but the price for that can be too high.

Kelsey Ayton
Born in Warsaw. Studied Psychology at SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities; took part in several inspiring Erasmus programs.
Former Practical Psychologist| Blogger of Various Mass Media | Currently PlagiarismSearch content writer | Mother-Freelancer
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