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Library - Plagiarism and Copyright: How to avoid plagiarism?

Information in this LibGuide is organised to support and guide students in their academic activities.

How to avoid plagiarism?


To Avoid Plagiarism:

  • Never Copy Directly
  • Never Print Directly
  • Never Copy From Other Students


To Quote a Source:

  • Always Use “Quotation Marks”
  • Always Give Credit to the Source (Citing & Referencing)

To Paraphrase:

  • Always Use Your Own WordsAlways,
  • Give Credit to the Source


To Use Common Knowledge:

  • Always Use Facts Known by Many People
  • No Citations Needed






Tips for do's and don'ts

The do's

  • Learn to think independently and critically.

  • Read what others have said about a topic

  • Acknowledge the source and then formulate your own viewpoint.

  • Get acquainted with the correct method of citing & referencing and apply it to assignments etc.

The dont's

  • Don’t commit plagiarism intentionally.

  • Don’t hide behind ignorance. Plagiarism is a criminal offence. It is punishable , irrespective of whether it was committed intentionally or unintentionally

  • Don’t cut and paste information from electronic sources such as web sites/databases without acknowledging the source

  • Don’t use the work of a fellow student.

More tips

  • If you are saving information to files or making copies or printouts, make sure you have the bibliographic citation for each item.
  • When cutting and pasting into your paper, include the bibiographic citation information in the body of the paper simulteniously.
  • In your notes, identify whether something is a direct quotation of someone's work, a summary of someone else's idea or your own idea.
  • Check with your instructor when you are unsure about your use of sources.
  • If you interview someone (in person or electronically), you must give them credit.



Subject Guide

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Dawie Jacobs
University of Johannesburg Library
Auckland Park Campus
+27 11 559 3454

How to avoid plagiarism ?