Avoiding Plagiarism

Avoiding Plagiarism

Authors can avoid plagiarism by maintaining detailed records of their sources of information; being careful to identify direct quotations of the words of others using quotation marks; when not quoting directly, using proper paraphrasing technique; and always citing the sources of quoted or paraphrased content. Guidance to help authors avoid plagiarism is available from Purdue’s Online Writing Lab, Purdue’s Research Compliance office, and the U.S. Office of Research Integrity.

As a further precaution, final or near final drafts of manuscripts can be reviewed using software such as iThenticate, which identifies text in a document that is identical or nearly identical to text in the previously published literature. Purdue’s Graduate School requires that all theses and dissertations be reviewed using iThenticate. As such, all Purdue faculty have access to a free iThenticate account through Purdue’s site license.

iThenticate reports can be run on one’s own research to check for accidental self-plagiarism, and can be used within labs and research teams as both quality control and as a way to open up dialog about research ethics. Readers are encouraged to visit the Research Compliance website for more information about iThenticate, including how iThenticate reports should and should not be interpreted, how to set up an iThenticate account, and who to contact for questions.

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