What can get you expelled from your college or university?
Not attending classes? Maybe. Failing to pass an exam? Most likely. Submitting a plagiarized paper? Absolutely!
Many colleges around the U.S. and worldwide have a very strict policy when it comes to plagiarism. If it turns out that your paper is stolen from somewhere or includes too many quotes that haven't been properly credited, your further education is at risk.
So, how can you prevent this unpleasant situation?
We've put together all possible recommendations and tips to avoid plagiarism. Read on to find out.
What is Plagiarism?
As usual, let's start our guide to plagiarism and how to avoid it with a definition.
Plagiarism means taking someone else's work or ideas and representing them as your own. It is considered a breach of academic integrity and ethics and an expression of disrespect towards the scientific community. That is why many higher education institutions take it as a reason to expel students.
Why does plagiarism appear in college papers and essays, in particular?
Here are some common reasons:
- A strong desire to get a good grade
- Improper citations
- Poor time management
- No interest in the assignment or the topic
- Fear of failure
- Improper understanding of college or university policies
- Misunderstanding or plagiarism
However, in most cases, students simply believe that they will not get caught. As a result, they disregard avoiding plagiarism and submit the works that don't belong to them. However, it has become more common among college boards to implement mandatory plagiarism checks, so you can't rely on sheer luck anymore.
Why Should You Avoid Plagiarism?
Aside from the possibility of losing your place at a college or university and having a bad track record, here are some more solid reasons why you should do as much as possible to avoid plagiarism:
- You disrespect the author whose work you're stealing. Would you like anyone to do the same to the paper you've put hours of work into?
- You lose the trust of your professors. Even if your college doesn't expel you, they will give you a warning, which can hit your reputation pretty hard.
- You won't learn anything. The goal of any writing assignment is to improve your knowledge of the subject. But if you steal a paper, it won't do good for the quality of your education.
We can sum up all these three reasons with one statement - you can't steal someone else's ideas your whole life. Writing a paper helps form your own ideas and opinions, and the inability to do so will impact your career and your value as a professional.
However, you can't eliminate plagiarism completely, and here's why.
Some ideas will repeat themselves, especially if the topic has been researched thoroughly and there are many papers written on it. Your opinion can be the same as someone else's, but it's still your opinion.
That is why there is a plagiarism percentage limit allowed by universities. It will vary from one institution to another, but in general, it's around 15%. Our college paper writing service delivers papers with about 10% plagiarism on average. But again, everything depends on the topic. If it's unique, the plagiarism percentage should be lower than 5%.
Now, let's go over some tips to avoid plagiarism.
Tips for Avoiding Plagiarism
Here, we've prepared a few helpful recommendations on how not to plagiarize your essay. All of them are based on eliminating the reasons that cause plagiarism in the first place.
Let's dive in!
Tip #1: Start writing your essay early
Students often submit plagiarized papers because they either start writing hours before the deadline or can't manage their time and forget about the task altogether.
So, the earlier you start with your essay, the more time you will have to edit and proofread it and detect any possible plagiarized parts.
Tip #2: Collect resources and create a bibliography
To avoid plagiarism, you need to know which resources you're using. That's why it is crucial to collect all resources before you start writing. This way, you won't miss giving credit to all resources and will do it quickly, considering you'll have the entire bibliography ready.
Tip #3: Learn how to cite the resources properly
Speaking about giving credit, you will also have to do it the correct way, depending on the formatting style in the task requirements. MLA, APA, and Chicago styles have different recommendations when it comes to citing the resources, so make sure to familiarize yourself with them before writing.
Tip #4: Don't forget about quotation marks
Our last tip on how to prevent plagiarism is using quotation marks. You'd be surprised, but students often forget to use these punctuation marks in their college papers. As a result, plagiarism percentage rises, putting your grade at risk.
5 Ways to Avoid Plagiarism
Finally, here are some more tips to avoid plagiarism from our team of professional writers:
- Edit and proofread religiously. It is indeed a daunting task to edit your essay after writing it for hours, but it's a necessary step. This way, you eliminate any possible opportunity of missing the unquoted source.
- If you can't use quotation marks, paraphrase the source. It is a great recommendation on how to prevent plagiarism, but even if you paraphrase, you still have to cite the resource the quote comes from.
- Work on your own style. Many students plagiarize because they have poor writing skills. Work on your style to be able to present your own ideas and not steal from others.
- Credit your notes. If you're adding any notes to your essay, make sure to cite them as you go. You can adjust the citation to the formatting style during the editing process, but adding citations to notes on the go can help you avoid the possibility of plagiarism.
- Use plagiarism checkers. Yes, plural. Different programs show different results, and some of the ones available online are not as accurate as you want them to be. So, use several plagiarism checkers to analyze your paper.
Essentially, it all comes down to the time you spend on your paper. The more dedication you show, the lower possibility of plagiarism will be.
So, how can you avoid plagiarism?
Let's recap everything we mentioned:
- Start working on your essay early, don't procrastinate.
- Create a list of resources before writing an essay.
- Check how to cite the resources properly according to the formatting style.
- Use quotation marks.
- Edit and proofread your essay.
This concludes our guide on plagiarism and how to avoid it. In general, we recommend you to be careful with your papers as it can cost you a lot to submit a paper with improperly credited resources.
Have trouble checking your paper?
Our team of editors knows everything on how to prevent plagiarism! You can place an order now with a request to run your paper through our authorized plagiarism checking software, and we will issue a report helping you minimize the percentage and giving helpful recommendations!