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Academic Honesty

Learn what plagiarism is and how to avoid it.

Types of Plagiarism

We all know buying a paper or copying a paper verbatim is plagiarism. You may not, however, realize that plagiarism can take other forms. Below are five common types of plagiarism:

Five Popular Types of Plagiarism

Copying and Pasting Plagiarism

Anytime you copy and paste verbatim from a source and do not give the source credit it is plagiarism. If you do copy and paste a passage word for word, you must put the information in quotations (i.e. " ") marks and give credit to the author. This is called a direct quote. However, you do not want to fill your paper with direct quotations. Most of the content of your research paper should be ideas you've drawn from your research along with research put into your own words. Direct quotes are used when you feel what the author has said is particularly useful as worded.

Word Switch Plagiarism

But what if I copy and paste a passage and change up the words? Grabbing a thesaurus and finding synonyms for words is known as "Word Switch Plagiarism." You may choose to paraphrase or summarize a passage; however, the passage must be put into your own words. This means you not only change what words are used, but also the style and voice of the passage. Which bring us to...

Style Plagiarism

"Style Plagiarism" takes place when you follow the source material's structure line by line. Even if you put the information in your own words you're plagiarizing the author's style of reasoning.

Metaphor Plagiarism

Metaphors are figures of speech used to elucidate an author's point or paint a more vivid picture of an idea. For example, "Cumulus clouds look like mounds of fluffy marshmallows" is a metaphor.

Idea Plagiarism

Plain and simple: If it's not your own idea, you've got to cite it unless it's common knowledge. Examples of common knowledge are things like the sky is blue and the United States is made up of fifty states. If you're in doubt, cite the source.

Plain and simple: If it's not your own idea, you've got to cite it unless it's common knowledge. Examples of common knowledge are things like the sky is blue and the United States is made up of fifty states. If you're in doubt, cite the source.

Five Types of Plagiarism: Dr. C. Barnbaum of Valdosta State University

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