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Academic Integrity and Plagiarism: Avoiding Plagiarism: Tips

A guide for helping students understand and avoid plagiarism.

Take Detailed Notes

When taking notes, be sure to always write down the title, author, date of publication, and page number (or URL) of your source. This way, you be able to easily find it again if necessary when you are preparing your works cited page. For websites and online material, email yourself a copy. For print material, take a picture of the title page with your smartphone.

(image source: john jackson)

Proofread Your Citations

Always proofread your work before submitting it to your professor. This includes proofing your citations and Works Cited page. In most cases, you should set aside at least an hour to review your final draft. Some students find it is helpful reserve time to focus just on proofreading their citations. As you do this, ask yourself:

  • Is this my idea/opinion or an idea/opinion from something I read?
  • Is there a citation in my Works Cited page for everything I've cited in my text?
  • Is there at least one in-text citation for everything listed on my Works Cited page?

(image source: sidewalk_flying on flickr, cc by)

Use Citation Tools

When you are using a library database or Google Scholar, there is often a citation tool built into the platform to help you create citations in APA, MLA, Chicago (and more!) formats. Look for a "Cite" or "Citation" link. It's not always in the same place depending on what databases or search tool you are using, but it's usually near to top right of the page.


(image sources: john jackson)

Talk to a Librarian or Writing Tutor

Use the chat box below to speak to a librarian during normal business hours or use one of the contact methods listed on our Ask-a-Librarian page. We're available by phone, email, chat, and text or you can stop by in-person anytime. You can also contact CAAS to meet with a tutor or writing mentor.