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ENG 1320: College Writing II: Plagiarism

Ways to Avoid Plagiarism

Here's how to avoid plagiarism: 

present information you have found in the body of your paper by using...

Direct quote

  • If you want to use a sentence or a passage exactly as it was written, you can include a direct quote, surrounded by quotation marks, and cite it by referencing the author and work of origin.
  • Make sure you cite your sources properly - you're just giving credit where credit is due - so use a citation guide and do it right!


  • You can also write a summary (in your own words of course) of the ideas or text you want to use. It helps to write the summary from your memory rather than looking directly at the passage.


  • Paraphrasing is similar to a summary. It just means taking what you have read and rewriting it in your own words.

Writing a summary and paraphrasing can be tricky as you MUST put the information in your own words, so to learn more about avoiding plagiarism, read the Plagiarism Guide.

MLA - Quoting vs. Paraphrasing

What is Plagiarism?

Plagiarism is a very serious offense. 

Examples of Plagiarism Include:

  • Using someone else's ideas or writings and presenting them as your own
  • Using someone else's paper or paying someone to write your paper
  • Restating someone else's ideas or writings too closely
  • Not citing quotations


This image is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license, and was created by Carrot Lord.

Who can help me make sure I'm NOT plagiarizing?

If you have specific questions about citing your sources, writing tips, or help with editing, go to:

Student Learning Assistance Center (SLAC)

Get in-person tutoring at the Student Learning Assistance Center, or SLAC, located on the 4th floor of Alkek Library. Check the website for hours and availability.

SLAC also maintains good handout page for quick reference.

Texas State University Writing Center

The Writing Center is located on the first floor of ASB North. You can get help with all types of writing, including papers, essays, and resumes.

The Writing Center offers in-person and online tutoring (check their website for more information). You can also print out documentation handouts.


For More Information:

Read the Plagiarism Guide.

Texas State Honor Code

According the the Texas State Honor Code:

WE ARE HONEST. We do our own work and are honest with one another in all matters. We understand how various acts of dishonesty, like plagiarizing, falsifying data, and giving or receiving assistance to which one is not entitled, conflict as much with academic achievement as with the values of honesty and integrity.  Click here to read the entire Texas State Honor Code. 

Plagiarism is Detectable

How violators WILL be caught:

  • The quality of writing is inconsistent.
  • Writing includes specialized vocabulary that is inconsistant with the student's level of knowledge.
  • The paper cites references that are not included in the reference list (works cited).
  • Anti-plagiarism software is readily available to instructors to make catching plagiarism cases easy.
  • The reference list is incomplete.