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FEBE- Metallurgy: Plagiarism

Guide to Metallurgy Information Sources

Defining Plagiarism

What is Plagiarism?

Many people think of plagiarism as copying another's work or borrowing someone else's original ideas. But terms like "copying" and "borrowing" can disguise the seriousness of the offense:

According to the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, to "plagiarise" means:

  • to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own
  • to use (another's production) without crediting the source
  • to commit literary theft
  • to present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source

In other words, plagiarism is an act of fraud. It involves both stealing someone else's work and lying about it afterward


Copyright can be defined as: "A bundle of intangible rights granted by statute to the author or originator of certain literary or artistic productions, whereby, for a limited period, the exclusive privilege is given to that person (or toany party to whom he or she transfers ownership) to make copies of the same for publication and sale" (Source) Examples are: a novel; poem; photograph; movie; painting, etc. 

Copyright Infringement:

"Copyright infringement involves any violation of the exclusive rights of the copyright owner. It may be unintentional or intentional." (Source)

Fair Use:

"Fair use is a judicial doctrine that refers to a use of copyrighted material that does not infringe or violate the exclusive rights of the copyright holder. Fair use is an important and well established limitation on the exclusive right of copyright owners. (Source)

How to avoid Plagiarism UJ Library video

Plagiarism Test Online

Click and Play our Plagiarism GAME and LEARN how to avoid PLAGIARISM 


Turnitin can be defined as an originality checking and plagiarism prevention service that checks your writing for citation mistakes or inappropriate copying.  When you submit your paper, Turnitin compares it to text in its massive database of student work, websites, books, articles, etc.    

Turnitin is integrated into the Assignments tool, this means that when you upload your paper to your classroom for grading, it will automatically be sent through Turnitin's repository, with no need to log in separately at  The Similarity Report that it generates will  help identify possible instances of plagiarism.


Types of Plagiarism

  • Cut/copy and paste material from the Web
  • To download documents from the Internet and hand this material in as your own work
  • Copying the work of another student (past or present), including essay material, laboratory data or computer source code;
  • Copying course material or lecture notes without acknowledging
  • Copying material out of a textbook or journal, without citing & referencing the source

Consequences of Plagiarism

  • Plagiarism is illegal: It may be regarded as a criminal  offence
  • If a student is found guilty of plagiarism: He/she may be expelled from the university
  • By a court of law: a fine or imprisonment may be imposed
  • Plagiarism is unethical because it is intellectual theft – the plagiariser stands to benefit or gain an unfair advantage from the theft.
  • It is in conflict with  UJ values of trust and academic integrity.
  • It is dishonest (a form of theft).
  • It shows disrespect for the rights of the original author.
  • It tarnishes the University reputation, and diminishes the value of your qualifications
  • It casts suspicion on the honest work of other students