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ENG 112 - Writing/Research in the Disc: Plagiarism/Integrating Sources

This course, the second in a series of two, introduces research techniques, documentation styles, and writing strategies. Emphasis is placed on analyzing information and ideas and incorporating research findings into documented writing and research projec

Plagiarism

What about Plagiarism?

Plagiarism is using someone's words and passing them off as your own. This can be intentional or accidental, however most students do not intend to plagiarize but instead make mistakes by not summarizing or citing correctly. By following the information above, the writer should be able to incorporate sources into their own work without plagiarizing. Here are some more tips for avoiding plagiarism:

  • Plan your paper and allow yourself time. By creating an outline and focusing on your purpose you are less likely to heavily copy another writer's work. Without the pressure of time, you'll be less likely to carelessly copy others' work.
  • Choose credible sources that contain the information that you'll need for your citations.
  • Keep up with your sources.
  • Take good notes (that include the source).
  • Read in chunks and don't try to paraphrase and summarizing sentence by sentence. By reading a chunk of information and pulling out the most relevant or important information, you are able to summarizing or paraphrase what is most important to your purpose.
  • Use in-text citations throughout planning and writing of your paper.
  • Even when you change words, do not imitate the sentence structure of your source.
  • No matter what you think, it is NOT ok to copy; even if you think your teacher doesn't care or won't notice.
  • When in doubt, cite your source. 

Resources to Teach and Learn Incorporating Sources

Plagiarism Spectrum from Turnitin

What do you think? Case 1

•You read: In 1973, a pilot named Emily Howell became the first female pilot on a scheduled American airline at Frontier Airlines. American and Eastern Airlines soon followed with women pilots.
•You write: In 1973, Emily Howell became the first female pilot on an American airline at Frontier Airlines. Women pilots soon followed at Eastern and American Airlines (Smith 73).

PIcture of Emily Howell

What do you think? Case 2

 
You read:  Over the first seven episodes it’s easy to get swept up in how well the show reanimates beloved movie tropes and channels the feel of the 1980s. But by the finale, it becomes clear that the series has an ugly side that can be traced to the show’s treatment of its most vulnerable and enigmatic major character: the 12-year-old girl with magical abilities who goes by the name “Eleven.” Judging by her arc, which involves near-constant suffering, Eleven seems like Stranger Things’ biggest blind spot. The show harbors empathy for its many characters: Ryder’s harried mother Joyce, Police Chief Jim Hopper, Will’s best friend Mike, Mike’s teenage sister Nancy. Yet despite a rich backstory, Eleven is the show’s most thinly sketched protagonist, and it sometimes feels like Stranger Things’ reverence for 1980s pop culture is to blame. In her first scene, Eleven is walking alone and barefoot in the woods, wearing only a hospital gown. She has a shaved head, can barely speak, and has a tattoo of the number “011” on her wrist. By the time Will’s friends Mike, Lucas, and Dustin find her, she’s already witnessed the fatal shooting of a kindly restaurant owner who tried to get her help. When they ask her what her name is, she points to her tattoo. (They call her “El” for short.)

 

You write: Over the first seven episodes it’s easy to get swept up in how well the show reanimates beloved movie tropes and channels the feel of the 1980s. But by the finale, it becomes clear that the series has an ugly side that can be traced to the show’s treatment of its most vulnerable and enigmatic major character: the 12-year-old girl with magical abilities who goes by the name “Eleven.” In her first scene, Eleven is walking alone and barefoot in the woods, wearing only a hospital gown (Cruz, 2016).

From: Cruz, L.  (2016). Where Stranger Things Loses Its Magic. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2016/07/stranger-things-netflix/491681/.  

What do you think? Case 3

•You read: Some aspects of international travel were far from glamorous. In the 1970s, the price of oil went skyrocketing. Airlines flew their planes slower to conserve fuel because of the OPEC oil price increases.
•You write: According to Omelia and Waldock, rising oil prices in the 1970s forced airlines to find ways to conserve fuel (119).
Oil Rig from 1972

Signal Words

Signal Verbs to Help you Introduce the Quote

Signal phrases introduce the material, often including the author's name. Remember that the signal verb must be appropriate to the idea you are expressing.

acknowledges * concludes * emphasizes * replies * advises * concurs * expresses * reports * agrees * confirms * interprets * responds * allows * criticizes * lists * reveals * answers * declares * objects * says * asserts * describes * observes * states * believes * disagrees * offers * suggests * charges * discusses * opposes * thinks * claims * disputes * remarks * writes

Music Copyright Infringement Cases

Library Instruction Survey

Working Your Sources Into Your Paper

To use your sources (books, articles, interviews, blogs, etc.) in a research paper, there are three main techniques. 

Direct Quotes

Paraphrasing

Summarizing

For each of these techniques, you will need to Signal, Cite, and Comment. Signaling allows the reader to know that you are incorporating another writer's ideas, the citation gives information about where the information came from, and the comments will show your reader how this information supports your ideas. For more information about how this works, check out the the strategies on this page.

Remember, sources are important to strengthen your argument, show contradicting opinions, share statistics, and lead your reader to more information about your topic. Using and citing sources allows your excellent research to show through and help to establish you as a credible writer.

Direct Quotes - Workshop

Guidelines for Direct Quotes

Direct Quotes is using the exact words of a source. 

Think of the quote as a rare and precious jewel. 

Quotes can be super-effective in getting your point across to the reader. Just be sure you’re not stringing a bunch of quotes together – you want your voice to be stronger than the voice of your sources. You always need to interpret, analyze, add to and explain more about the quote to your reader.  

Here are some guidelines to help you decide when to use quotes:

  • Wording that is so memorable, unforgettable or powerful, or expresses a point so perfectly, that you cannot change it without weakening the meaning.
  • An important passage is so dense or rich that it requires you to analyze it closely. This requires that the passage be quoted so the reader can follow your analysis.
  • A claim you are making is such that the doubting reader will want to hear exactly what the source said. This is mostly when you criticize or disagree with a source. You want your reader to know you aren't misrepresenting the source.
  • Your attempts to paraphrase or summarize are awkward or much longer than the source material.

Paraphrase/Summarize Workshop

Guidelines for Paraphrasing and Summarizing

Think of Paraphrases and Summaries as your foundations

Paraphrase and summarize long passages where the main point is important to the point you are making, but the details are not. You should use paraphrasing and summarizing much more often than direct quotes. A good balance would be 75% paraphrasing and summarizing and 25% direct quotes.

Paraphrase: You are paraphrasing when you take someone else’s words and rewrite them in your own words without altering the meaning or providing interpretation. Paraphrases are about the same length as the original. Always cite your paraphrase.
Summarize: You are summarizing when you condense the author's words or ideas without altering the meaning or providing interpretation using your own words -- basically, you’re presenting the original information in a nutshell. Always cite it.

Source Synthesis

To successfully synthesize (or integrate, or put together, or blend) your sources into your own writing, you need to think about balancing the amount of your own writing with the other sources you are using. For example, look at the following texts. The highlighted text is from other sources.

 

Writing #1     

     Composting is a great way to use grass clippings, shredded leaves, and even discarded food items to add nutrients to your yard or garden. The key to composting is to have brown materials (shredded dry leaves, twigs, and branches) and green materials (grass clippings and kitchen scraps) as well as water to keep the mixture moist.  Willi Evans Galloway writes in Organic Gardener that the right equation for composting is “Compost = Air + Water + 2 Parts Browns + 1 Part Greens” (2004). The brown materials contain carbon and the green materials contain nitrogen which are necessary for bacteria and fungi, as well as larger organisms such as worms, to live and speed up the decomposing process (USDA, n.d.). The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) also suggests using a tarp over the compost pile to increase the heat and speed up the decomposition process (2017). Although creating a compost pile does require a little maintenance and an occasional toss to keep good air flow, the benefits are reducing food waste as well as putting yard waste to good use.  


Writing #2     

     Composting is a great way to use yard and food waste to add nutrients to the yard. “Composting speeds the process by providing an ideal environment for bacteria and other decomposing microorganisms. The final product, humus or compost, looks and feels like fertile garden soil. This dark, crumbly, earthy-smelling stuff works wonders on all kinds of soil and provides vital nutrients to help plants grow and look better” (USDA, n.d.). The brown materials contain carbon and the green materials contain nitrogen which are necessary for bacteria and fungi, as well as larger organisms such as worms, to live and speed up the decomposing process (USDA, n.d.). According to the USDA (n.d.), “compost can be used for all your planting needs. Compost is an excellent source of organic matter to add to your garden or potted plants. It helps improve soil structure which contributes to good aeration and moisture-holding capacity. Compost is also a source of plant nutrients” (USDA, n.d.). Although creating a compost pile does require a little maintenance and an occasional toss to keep good air flow, the benefits are reducing food waste as well as putting yard waste to good use. 


Writing #3     

     Composting is a great way to use grass clippings, shredded leaves, and even discarded food items to add nutrients to your yard or garden. The key to composting is to have brown materials (shredded dry leaves, twigs, and branches) and green materials (grass clippings and kitchen scraps) as well as water to keep the mixture moist. There is an equation for compost that is air+water+2 parts browns + 1 part greens. Carbon is in the brown materials and nitrogen is in the green materials. Both of these are important to support worms, bacteria and other organisms that break down materials. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) also suggests using a tarp over the compost pile to increase the heat and speed up the decomposition process (2017). Although creating a compost pile does require a little maintenance and an occasional toss to keep good air flow, the benefits are reducing food waste as well as putting yard waste to good use. 


Citations

Famous Cases of Plagiarism

Rafael's Isaiah is the left picture and Michelangelo's Isaiah is the right. See any similarities?