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ENC 1102: English Composition II

Tips for Avoiding Plagiarism

Students sometimes unintentionally plagiarize for a variety of reasons. Here are some tips to help you avoid it:

*Take Careful Notes*
Keep track of sources (on the web and in print), being sure to use quotation marks around everything that comes directly from another text. Maintain an accurate bibliography of source by writing down the author, title, publisher, page number, etc, as you are taking notes.

*Remember that everything must be documented*
This includes direct quotations, paraphrases, and anything that is not "common knowledge."

*Paraphrase correctly*
Be sure you are not just rearranging or replacing a few words, here and there, from the original.  Instead, read carefully through what you intend to paraphrase and rewrite the idea in your own words without looking at the original work as a guide. Double-check it against the original after you've written it.

*Don't Procrasinate!*
Many errors occur from lack of time. Don't let that be you!

Plagiarism in the 21st Century

Plagiarism can be through speeches, writing, and even pictures. You don't have to be directly quoting someone either.  If you are taking similar words and simply rearranging them, that is plagiarism too. Check out the other resources on this page to help you avoid the big P!

What Do I Cite?

Plagiarism FlowChart

What is paraphrasing?

Paraphrasing is rewriting an author's work into your own words. Paraphrasing is useful because it allows you to condense ideas into shorter passages and to highlight similarities and differences between someone else's work and your own while retaining the tone of your own writing.

Keep in mind that although the information is in your own words, it is still the original author's work and ideas. You have merely rephrased them.  Therefore, you must still cite the source.

When to Quote

Directly quoting a work is taking the exact words from a source and putting it into your own paper. Quotations should be used sparingly and are usually used in conjunction with paraphrasing and summarizing.  Use quotations only when the exact words of what an author is saying is particularly significant to your point.

Quotation marks should be placed around the words or phrase, and the quote should be properly cited. For particularly long quotes, you will usually need to indent the passage into a block quote.