Writing a stellar assignment is an art not all students can master. This is when they look for experts or professionals who will deliver plagiarism free essays or projects. Be it research papers where you need to quote your interviewers or reports where you want to cite an author’s works; you need to learn the art of paraphrasing.
Mispresenting someone else’s ideas as your won can lead to plagiarism issues, and you can be penalized for it.
A recent survey of 51,000 students shows that there has been a 10% surge in plagiarism after the pandemic. It gathers anonymous insights from students across Canada, UK, France, Netherlands etc. the pre-COVID cases were standing at 35% while they rose to 45% after the pandemic.
If you are wondering why avoiding plagiarism is essential and how you can do it, read on to find out.
What Is Plagiarism?
The word plagiarism is derived from the Latin word “plagiarius”, which means “kidnapper”. Well, this is not the literal translation of the word, but it means someone who steals something off of others. The Merriam-Webster dictionary describes the word plagiarism as “to steal and pass off as one’s own”.
The usage of steel in these definitions refers to the instances when you steal off someone else’s works and put them as your own. The act can either be intentional or unintentional, but you are accused of plagiarism when you don’t credit the source. Plagiarism is considered as an act of forgery that can have adverse effects on your academic career.
Most colleges and universities take significant steps to keep plagiarism at bay. However, if students are caught for this, they can either cancel their papers, deal with a suspension, or be expelled.
In the ed-tech era, simply copying and pasting content from across the internet can seem to have no significant effects. However, it is not even minutely acceptable in an academic or professional setting.
5 Tricks to Keep Plagiarism at Bay
- Cite Your Sources
Avoiding plagiarism has never been easier. The best way to do this is to cite all your sources. When you are borrowing someone else’s idea that is not your own, it is always advised to mention the sources. Follow the formatting guidelines given by your professors and cite accordingly.
Mention the name of the source, the date of publication and any other element as required by the style guide you are following. Here are some ways by which you can cite your sources:
- Text your source briefly by following the in-text citation method.
- Add a reference page at the end of your paper to mention the complete citation source, including all the information.
- Include Quotations
When you are using someone else’s thoughts, ideas or words, the best way you can avoid plagiarism is by using quotation marks. This will denote that the terms are not your own and it is borrowed.
However, it is also essential to remember that even a direct quote should be cited to enable your readers to figure out from where you have taken the quote from.
This will increase your credibility as a writer, and your arguments will be more convincing and compelling. Follow these steps while quoting:
- Name the source in your text and cite the sources accurately.
- Use indent long quotations or quotation marks while including the exact words for technical accuracy.
- Understand Paraphrasing
Paraphrasing is an art every student shall master. However, most students fail to express the author’s opinion in their own words and are often accused of plagiarism.
Rewording should be done without changing the original meaning of the sentence. When done incorrectly, it gives rise to copyright issues.
However, even after paraphrasing, you should still remember it is not your own idea, so you should cite the sources. Here are some tips that can make paraphrasing easy:
- Use synonyms or similar phrases as the source to keep the original meaning intact.
- Try to alter the sentence structure of the source to make the idea your own.
- Generate Own Ideas
This is one of the best and the most challenging ways to avoid plagiarism. Instead of mirroring someone’s idea tries to generate your own. Brainstorm thoughts and explore what your take on the topic is. Try to find out the perspective you have for the case and point out how you can contribute to the world of research already available.
Your audience should be able to relate to your ideas, and they should figure out how and why your paper plays a vital role in the exploration of this concept. Here are some ways that can help you generate ideas:
- Arrange a brainstorming session for yourself and try to select a quiet place to do so. Avoid any distractions and write down all the ideas that come to mind.
- Research and read about the topic from multiple sources to have a better understanding of the issue. However, make sure to look for genuine sources only.
- Use Plagiarism Checker
Plagiarism checker tools are readily available on the internet. While you are researching for your assignment, sometimes it so happens that you inadvertently include such words or phrases in your writing without proper citation. The act was not intentional. However, it will result in plagiarism issues.
Using plagiarism checker tools that can be a life saviour. Before the final submission, run all your papers through the online plagiarism checker tools available. However, the catch here is finding the best and most effective device from the millions you encounter. Here are some ways in which plagiarism checker tools help you:
- The scan your entire content for free and highlights the plagiarised areas for correction.
- You can also get the plagiarism report and the similarity percentage and websites with similar content.
Avoiding plagiarism doesn’t have to be as hard as climbing Everest. If you are aware of the basics and you follow these tips, you can quickly eliminate this process as a whole. While writing, be more aware of what can cause plagiarism, and this will enable you to avoid the issue.