Avoiding Plagiarism

Avoiding Plagiarism

One important aspect of academic honesty is crediting others' research which you can accomplish through the use of citations. Whenever you quote, paraphrase, or summarize the ideas of others you will need to use citations, hyperlinks, or other methods to refer back to the original sources.

Make sure to cite when:

  • using another person’s ideas, opinions, or theories
  • quoting another person’s spoken or written words
  • paraphrasing another person’s spoken or written words
  • summarizing another person's words or concepts
  • referencing facts, statistics, graphs, drawings, etc. that are not common knowledge


Photo of note-taking

Notetaking Tips

When gathering your notes, include complete citation information, including page number, for every source you are considering using. Keep track of your original comments versus what is quoted directly or paraphrased from the source. You may want to utilize different colored text and/or notecards to distinguish one source from the other, and use quotation marks when directly stating another person's words. Citation management tools like Zotero can also help you keep track of quotes, paraphrasing, etc.

Get more help

If you have questions about academic integrity, avoiding plagiarism, and/or citing sources, contact the Hacherl Research & Writing Studio or submit a question online or through chat. You can also refer to Western Libraries' online Citation Guides for specific guidelines on citing sources.


Photo by International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center via Flickr CC BY-NC-SA 2.0