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Avoiding Plagiarism

Need help avoiding plagiarism? Learn what plagiarism is, common plagiarism issues, and tutorials to help you avoid plagiarizing!

How to Summarize

A summary is a "short synopsis of the information provided in the original source, in your own words". [emphasis added].

When summarizing, think about how to say that to someone else without the text in front of you. Would you say “nosocomial, or hospital-acquired?”

Which is Plagiarized? Summarizing Text

Source

“The rapid growth and accessibility of social networking websites has fundamentally changed the way people manage information about their personal and professional lives” (Garner and O’Sullivan, p. 113).

Example 1

How people manage information online has been drastically altered due to the proliferation of social networking websites. (Garner & O’Sullivan, p. 113)

Example 2

The rapid spawning and availability of social networking websites has completely changed the way people manage information about their personal and professional lives. (Garner and O’Sullivan, p. 113)

Citation: Garner J, O’Sullivan H. Facebook and the professional behaviours of undergraduate medical students. Clin Teach 2010 Jun;7(2):112-5.

 

Which was plagiarized?

Example 2 was plagiarized! I've changed the words, but look at the sentence structure itself. It reads exactly the same as the source material. It is not changed enough to stand without quotes, and is considered plagiarism.

How to Paraphrase

When paraphrasing, you are writing your interpretation of the author’s meaning. The paraphrase is nearly as long as the original source.

Which is Plagiarized? Paraphrasing Text

Source

If family physicians stop administering vaccines in their practices, it would have serious implications for the role of family medicine practices as a medical home, as well as for the nation’s vaccine infrastructure. Twenty percent of visits by children to physicians are with family physicians, and one-third of parents name a family physician as the source of care for their child (Campos-Outcalt, 507).

Example 1

As Campos-Outcalt et al. states in their article, there would be grave repercussions for the medical home and vaccine models if family physicians ceased providing vaccinations for patients, as family physicians see 20% of our nation’s children, and 1 of every 3 parents state that a family physician is the primary physician for their child (p. 507).

Example 2

Our vaccine infrastructure and the family medicine medical home model are in serious jeopardy if family physicians stop administering vaccines in their practices.  Twenty percent of visits by children to physicians are with family physicians, and one-third of parents name a family physician as the source of care for their child (Campos-Outcalt, p. 507).

Citation: Campos-Outcalt D, et al. Vaccines Provided by Family Physicians. Annals of Family Medicine. 2010. 8:507-510.

Which is plagiarism?

Example 2 is plagiarized! The first sentence has been changed substantially, but the second sentence is a word-for-word copy of the original text. Even an in-line citation can't prevent this from being plagiarism.

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