One of the most important elements of a research paper is your ability to find and incorporate the work of other authors.
However, when you use a quote, summarize, or paraphrase something from another author, it's equally important that you mention where the information comes from. This is called a citation, and has two parts.
1. An in-text citation. This appears directly after the quote, summary, or paraphrase in the body of your paper.
2. A record in your paper's references or works cited page. This is a page that appears at the end of your paper and which lists out all the sources you have used.
The rules for how citations are formatted depends on the style you are using, which depends on the subject you're writing in. For this course, you may use MLA or APA, or any other well-known style. See the links below for detailed guides on citing sources in MLA and APA.
Plagiarism is presenting someone else's work as your own.
This can be done purposefully, such as by copy-pasting large sections of a paper and pretending you've written it yourself or by re-using someone else's paper.
However, it is also possible to plagiarize by not properly citing resource you use in a paper you have written yourself. For example, if you summarize something from a scholarly article without including a citation for it, that counts as plagiarism.
To avoid plagiarism, make sure you cite the sources for information you use in papers. See the MLA and APA style guides above for examples of how to do this, or ask your librarian if you're unsure. You can also stop by the writing center if you are on campus.
This brief guide from the WOU Writing Center explains the basics of how to avoid plagiarism in your work.
The Writing Center is the only academic support unit on campus specifically designed to promote your development and success as a college writer. The consultant team is available to assist you in person and online with writing projects for any course and any level of instruction. The Writing Center also offers specialized assistance for multimodal compositions or new media projects like digital narratives, blogs, websites, slideware presentations, and even YouTube videos.
Hamersly Library, Room HL 116
7:00 p.m. -10:00 p.m.
Walk-in sessions only: First come, first served