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Mass communication: Plagiarism

What is Plagiariam

What is plagiarism?

“To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own : use (another's production) without crediting the source.” 
plagiarism. (2010). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary.Retrieved August 10, 2010, from

Ignorance does not excuse plagiarim.  Learn some of the myths of plagiarism.

Types of plagiarism


  • Mixing words or ideas from an unacknowledged source in with your own words or ideas.
  • Mixing together uncited words and ideas from several sources into a single work.
  • Mixing together properly cited uses of a source with uncited uses.

Direct Plagiarism

  • A phrase or passage that is copied word for word, but not quoted.


  • Rephrasing another person’s work and inserting into your own work without acknowledging the original source.

Insufficient Acknowledgement

  • Half crediting source; whereby you acknowledge the author’s work the first time, but continue to use the author’s words without giving additional attribution.

Detecting Plagiarism

Detecting plagiarism

  • The writing style and language are above the level at which the student usually writes

  • The student uses jargon or specialized terminology that is inconsistent with the student’s level of knowledge.

  • The quality of writing is inconsistent. The beginning and ending of the paper is deficient, but the rest of the paper is well written.

  • The paper contains references to citations that are not included in the reference list.

  • The reference list is inaccurate or incomplete.


Useful site for instructors and students to prevent the spread of internet plagiarism.


iThenticate claims to be "the leading provider of professional plagiarism detection and prevention technology used worldwide by scholarly publishers and research departments to ensure the originalityof written work before publication. iThenticate helps editors, authors and researchers prevent misconduct by comparing manuscripts against its database of over 32 billion web pages and 125 million content items. iThenticate is developed by Turnitin, the leader in plagiarism and originalitychecking for educational institutions worldwide".


Academic Integrity at the Unveristy of Guelph

Two part online tutorial dealing with Academic Integrity.  Part 1: discusses the more general topic of academic integrity; Part 2: focuses on plagiarism. 

 How to Recognize Plagiarism

This tutorial created by the School of Education at Indiana University includes examples of plagiarism, interactive practice questions and a test. 

 Plagiarism and Academic Integrity

A multimedia tutorial created by Rutgers University Libraries.  



Avoiding Plagiarism

Purdue University's Online Writing Lab provides examples on when to credit sources, practice exercises and tips when doing research.


A useful website to gain more understanding of plagiarism.

Defining and Avoiding Plagiarism
(intended primarily for faculty) The Council of Writing Program Administrators presents the best practices on how to avoid plagiarism

Avoiding self-plagiarism, and other questionable writing practices: A guide to ethical writing

U.S. Department of Health and Human Service's Office of Research Integrity sponsored the guide written by Miguel Roig, PhD.

Preventing Plagiarism: Keepin' It Real 

Provided by the University of California - San Diego.  Includes a variety of information on plagiarism for students and faculty.


New York Online provides a quality website on the topic of plagiarism.  You will find useful information for students, teachers, and answers to "essential questions".