The No-Brainer Gude on How to Avoid Plagiarism in Your Writing
You might have realized that your professor always emphasizes a lot on submitting plagiarism-free papers. This is simply because plagiarism indicates how incompetent a student is. The fact that you have been given the privilege to source information from the Internet does not mean that you should go ahead and copy everything. Doing so means that you have broken the golden rule in academic writing.
There is absolutely no need to lose your marks or have your papers cancelled due to plagiarism, yet there is something that can be done to avoid the menace. So, what are some of the things that you can do to ensure that your essays are original?
Here are 10 tips to abide by:
1. Understand What Plagiarism Entails
You cannot avoid plagiarism when you do not understand what the whole thing is about. Plagiarism is simply the practice of copying other people’s work without the necessary attribution. The practice is considered illegal and can even land you in trouble with the law if the affected parties sue for breach of copyright. At no point is the content found online or offline supposed to be duplicated.
2. Outsource Carefully
There is nothing wrong in seeking help with your homework or essay. The only problem is that you might be presented with plagiarized work and you might unknowingly submit it to your professor. This means that you will be in a total mess despite paying so much to have your assignment done.
If you must outsource, then make sure that you do it carefully. You must be fully guaranteed that the person working on your paper is very qualified and with a clean track record in submitting original work. If necessary, you can vet the potential writer and understand how capable they are. Better still, you can use freelancing platforms to outsource. Note that most freelancing sites have a very strict policy on plagiarism. This means that chances of getting copied work from freelancing platforms are low. When presented with such plagiarism-free papers, you can go a step further and use them as a source of your own writing hence ending up with even more original papers. HomeworkCrest is one example of the best essay writing service platforms that insist on plagiarism-free papers.
3. Know How to Cite
The least you can do to ensure that your work is not considered as plagiarized is attributing your sources. Note that the work you find on the Internet, whether a book, a journal, an article, press release or just a newspaper, belongs to a certain party. Only the rightful owner of the work is authorized to duplicate the work. Any other party must cite their sources as a way of acknowledging the owner.
Make sure that your work is complemented by the necessary citation based on a defined style. Some of the styles that you can use in citing include Chicago, Harvard, Turban, APA and MLA. The bottom line is that citation is very important and all your essays must have it.
Paraphrasing is basically changing the manner in which a sentence, paragraph or phrase appears in its original form. It is the first in command as compared to citation. The strategy is usually applied in all literature work including academic writing. It is important to note that you can present your paraphrased work without citation and still qualify the plagiarism test.
The idea in paraphrasing is first reading through the original content and then rewriting it afresh. You can decide to slightly alter (spin) the wording of a sentence or paragraph. Better still, you can decide to change the entire approach of the same paragraph. Either way, it is important to ensure that your work is very original.
5. Scrutinize Your Work Before Submission
This goes for those who love outsourcing their essays. Most students have the tendency of submitting their essays to the professor without even checking them for plagiarism. This, we must acknowledge, is a very dangerous tendency and it might ruin your grades for nothing. Why let the avoidable put you at loggerheads with your professor?
Instead of rushing to submit your work to the professor without checking for plagiarism, take your time to scrutinize everything. Do not just trust the word of the writer. Scrutinize your work deeply before submission.
6. Know the Best Plagiarism Tools
It is quite fortunate that there are so many tools that you can use to run your work for a plagiarism test. However, you must be very selective with the tools that you use for that purpose. Some of the tools may not be efficient enough and traces of copied work may reach your professor. Inquire first and understand the leading tools in detecting copied work. Paid tools are always considered best. Some of the best plagiarism tools to consider trying your hands on are COPYSCAPE and Turnitin.
7. Include a List of References
The fact that you have included in-text references in your essay does not mean that it is enough. You still need to incorporate a list of your sources at the end of your essay. Your professor may not tell if your work was properly cited from in-text references. The only way to establish the authenticity of references is by checking the bibliography. It is important, therefore, to ensure that your entire essay has a well-organized bibliography.
8. Know Your Professor
You need to understand the policies that your professor operates under. This is an ideal way of understanding the kind of papers that they need. The truth is that some professors are very strict and they do not tolerate the slightest plagiarism. Others are a bit lenient.
The essence of understanding the stand and policies of your professor is that you will be able to watch plagiarism more consciously. In other words, you will be in a better position to abide by all the set rules.
9. Consult Your Professor
It is better to consult your professor on things you do not understand about plagiarism than become a victim of poor grades. Professors are always willing to assist and your case will not be an exception. Before you start your essay, ensure that you get everything clear.
The fact still remains that plagiarism is intolerable. The best thing is that you can avoid plagiarism in the easiest way. It is just a matter of utilizing the above-mentioned tips and you will be fine. Original essays are always the easiest way of garnering high marks.