How to Avoid Plagiarism
Guidelines for Avoiding Quotation Errors
Is the following statement true or false?
No acknowledgement of an author's words is better than an incorrect or incomplete citation.
The statement is false.
Giving no credit for someone else's words is the most serious error a student can make and is stealing.
Guideline IV: Avoid the most blatant of all forms of plagiarism—failing to acknowledge the author in any way when reproducing his or her words.
Here is an example of the most blatant form of plagiarism:
In 1938, the worst malaria epidemic in the history of the Americas broke out. A hundred thousand people were infected and as many as twenty thousand were thought to have died from it.
Here is an example of a proper citation:
According to an article in The New Yorker (2001), "In 1938, the worst malaria epidemic in the history of the Americas broke out" (Gladwell, p. 45). "A hundred thousand people" were infected and "as many as twenty thousand" were thought to have died from it (p. 45).
This example is correct because the author's exact words are introduced and surrounded by quotation marks, and a citation is provided.
There is no question as to which are the author's words and which are the student's.