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Start Your Research

Just starting your research? Review the basics here.

What is Plagiarism?


Plagiarism occurs when sources are not properly quoted and documented.  Written essays, personal statements and research papers require some form of documentation - formal or informal.  Sources must be credited, whether you quote them directly, summarize them or paraphrase them.

According to the Mount Saint Mary's University Catalog, plagiarism falls into the category of Academic Dishonesty.  It is a serious offense that will not be treated lightly.  Consequences include any of the following: failing the assignment, a lowered and/or failing grade in the course, suspension, academic probation or expulsion.

Mount Saint Mary's University professors use Turnitin to scan students' work for excessive similarities to other published materials from the program's database of print and online works.  Instructors can also tell if the writing style sounds like your voice.

How to Recognize Plagiarism

Welcome to the Indiana University Plagiarism Tutorials and Tests

Learn how to recognize plagiarism, test your understanding, and earn a certificate.

UI Plagiarism

Learn through Tutorials

Instruction covers 5 levels of difficulty. Explanations, video cases, examples, reflections, and practice with feedback are arranged from simple to complex (basic to expert levels).

We advise you to complete all levels of instruction and to complete practice tests successfully before you take a Certification Test.

Start with Basic Level, and then proceed to more difficult levels.

Plagiarism Checklist

Paraphrase vs Plagiarism

Other Plagiarism Checkers


Here are some resources that can be used to check documents for inadvertent plagiarism:

Nothing replaces the human touch! 
So, if you finish your paper early, ask a friend or trusted advisor to read over your paper. 

You can also go to the the following places for help with plagiarism:

  • Student Resource Center (SRC) (Doheny Campus) - for traditional Undergraduate Students - schedule a Writing Consultation in myMSMU
  • Chalon Academic Support Center (ASC) - (Chalon Campus) for traditional Undergraduate Students - request an appointment with a Writing and Critical Thinking Consultant
  • Professional & Academic Resource Center (PARC) (Doheny Campus) - for Graduate Students and Weekend/Evening College (WEC) Students - schedule an appointment for Writing - assistance with brainstorming, grammar, punctuation, citation, coherent argument, and revisions is available. Schedule an appointment in myMSMU.

Copyright Information

Avoid Plagiarism - Use Quotes and Paraphrase!


Researching, arguing a position, laying the foundation for scientific experiments, and all other academic pursuits begin with studying the work of others and using this work to inform our own. It is absolutely crucial to give credit to those who's work you use, and this is done using direct quotations and paraphrasing, and always citing your sources. Not to do so would be considered plagiarism. Plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty are treated as extremely serious violations of ethical conduct and may result in suspension or expulsion from the University.

A Quote is the exact wording used by the original author. Example:

  • "The primary reason we sentence individuals to jail or prison is to punish them for the criminal offense(s) they have committed against society." (Bayley 2010)

Paraphrasing, is rewriting another's words or ideas in your own words, often summarizing or synthesizing a larger text. Example:

  • Bayley argues that prison should be thought of as a punishment, and not a deterrent for others not to commit a crime. (2010) 

For more information view these guides on quoting and avoiding plagiarism: