One might say that plagiarism is, first of all, the problem for teachers, professors and tutors, for they constantly have to decide whether this or that good or not-so-good text is written by a student or compiled of pieces of other people’s works, or blatantly copy/pasted.
This is, of course, true, but not completely. To a very great degree, plagiarism is as bit problem for students as it is for the professors. The reasons are as follows:
- Students who resort to plagiarism or something close to plagiarism, but don’t perceive it as such, risk much more than professors who fail to notice a plagiarized paper.
- Student may use plagiarism inadvertently by making this or that part of his work too similar to that of another person or basing his paper on another one too heavily.
- The necessity to keep an eye on this takes time that could have been applied otherwise.
It is, of course, not only unethical, but also simply stupid to use plagiarism. Even in high school nowadays teachers have software for checking works for plagiarism and may find out whether this or that text is original without any problems. It is even more so for colleges and universities.
Thus, plagiarism has turned from a simple solution of problems to a landmine anybody can step on. To avoid being accused of plagiarism, just follow a set of rules:
- Check parts of your work with plagiarism-checking software in order for it not to resemble any other work. If it finds similarity, apply alterations.
- Always put abstracts of other people’s works into quotation marks; if you refer to another work, always mention it and its author.
- If your paper is based on another work, always apply changes sufficient for them to at least look differently.
- Don’t quote too often; although your work is supposed to be based on some ground, you may be denounced of having no thoughts of your own.
But of course, the main and the best rule to avoid problems in what concerns plagiarism is not to use it. Believe us – it doesn’t worth it.
Being caught with plagiarism means a bad mark only in high school; during later stages of your academic studies it may mean expulsion and/or great damage for reputation.