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What is Plagiarism?

The simplified definition for plagiarism is the copying and borrowing of another's original ideas and/or words. Plagiarism occurs with the inclusion of material not explicitly cited as well as with collaborative work from another student willfully or otherwise.

Penalties for Plagiarism

Each incidence of plagiarism is subject to review and consideration by the instructor, and is subject to a range of penalties including but not limited to failing the assignment, failing the course, and referral to the disciplinary review board (which may ultimately result in the expulsion, suspension, or disciplinary removal of the student from the university).

Plagiarism and Citation ResourcesSub-Heading

  • website dedicated to the multifaceted interpretations of incorrect citations.
  • Plagiarism Tutorial from the University of Southern Mississippi contains explanations for each step needed to prevent plagiarism as well as two interactive quizzes.
  • What is Plagiarism? from Rutgers University: this is an informative yet humorous introduction to plagiarism including tips to improve your writing in an effort to avoid plagiarism. The tutorial consists of two flash movies and a quiz to test your understanding of the content. 
  • Acknowledging Sources from University Of Texas, Arlington: includes examples of plagiarism in real life and outside of the classroom (like the New York Times and government documents).
  • Avoiding Plagiarism: What Do I Need to Cite? from Iowa State University
  • Plagiarism Game: This game created by Lycoming College tests your knowledge of plagiarism in a fun, interactive way. You can print the last screen as proof of completion.

Modern Language Association (MLA) Style

The Purdue Online Writing Lab

Purdue University offers a comprehensive guide to MLA style as well as a sample paper.

MLA Guide

American Psychological Association (APA) Style

APA is utilized primarily by psychology, sociology, political science, communications, education, and business.

Difference between MLA and APA

  • Due to the fields of study that utilize the style, APA emphasizes the year of publication with the author’s last name. MLA does not prioritize information by publication year but by the relevance of said information; in other words, a 1940’s study about Shakespeare can still contain relevant information for an academic paper.
  • Years of Preference: APA prioritizes the most recent published information while MLA prefers information spanning the last decade.

APA Resources

The Purdue Online Writing Lab

Purdue University offers a comprehensive guide to APA style as well as an APA sample paper formatted with the new guidelines for students and professionals.

APA Guide

Chicago (CMS) / Turabian Style

Chicago is utilized primarily by History, Art, Philosophy, Business, and Communication.

CMS Resources

The Purdue Online Writing Lab

Purdue University offers a comprehensive guide to CMS style as well as a sample paper.

CMS Guide

American Sociological Association (ASA) Style

ASA is a variation of APA style.

American Political Science Association (APSA) Style

The most recent APSA Style Manual (2006) asks writers to use the parenthetical documentation system in the Chicago Manual of Style (not the note system) for documentation in political science writing. 

Council of Science Editors (CSE)

Associated Press (AP) Style


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