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Plagiarism: How to Avoid


  • Is academic dishonesty; a form of cheating
  • Is using a work (the ideas, the words, the language or materials contained in the work) as your own
  • Is using the ideas of another without acknowledging where the information came from (the source)
  • Includes mistakes in citing 

UTMB Student HONOR Pledge:

On my honor, as a member of the UTMB community, I pledge to act with integrity, compassion and respect in all my academic and professional endeavors.


How to Avoid Accidental Plagiarism: Cite and Quote

When to cite?

  • When the idea came from another (not unique to you).
  • When the work helped to develop your own ideas.
  • When you refer to the work of another.
  • When paraphrasing (as a precaution!)


When to quote?

  • When using key phrases and terms (no matter how short!).
  • When presenting material where the meaning might be lost or changed if paraphrased or summarized.
  • To indicate an authority supports your point.


Ways to quote:  

  • Signal phrase (example - As Jones mentioned, ...)
  • Embed quotes (example - Johnson said it best when he said "the noblest search is the search for excellence"

Possible Citation Exemptions

♦  Common knowledge:  General, well-known information such as facts and dates.

♦  Paraphrasing:  Rewriting or restating an idea/point to make it clearer or match a writing style. Careful! May still require a citation.

♦  Summarizing (reducing section of text to key ideas or points).


Other Sites about Plagiarism

Plagiarism - an act or instance of using or closely imitating the language and thoughts of another author without authorization and the representation of that author's work as one's own, as by not crediting the original author.

plagiarism. (n.d.). Unabridged. Retrieved January 02, 2015, from website:

The following web sites can help you understand and avoid plagiarizing the works of others.



Watch Video for practice

Fun Videos to Illustrate Plagiarism:

Plagiarism Checkers - Free and $$$

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