A Brief History of Plagiarism in Academia and How to Avoid Getting Caught
Even though all people know that plagiarism is wrong nowadays, this phenomenon still exists. Moreover, the developers need to create more and more effective ways to define plagiarism in the different kinds of papers. In the current article, we offer you a short story of plagiarism in the context of academic works and the ways to avoid issues with plagiarism.
The history of academic plagiarism is more complex than it can seem to be from first sight. In ancient times people were often faced with the problem that is vice versa to contemporary plagiarism. Instead of signing the text with their names, some ancient authors put the importance of the idea they manifested ahead of their personal glory and signed the text with the names of more authoritative authors.
Later, in the Middle Ages, religion greatly impacted society in general and academic writing in particular. God was considered the creator of everything in the world, including new ideas. People were only mediators between society and God. Hence, The authors of the Middle Ages often left their works without authorships.
One more trend of the previous decades is related to the narrow circle of the scientific society. Nowadays, the majority of people in developed countries have the ability to get primary education and try their forces in science, if they feel the need and inspiration for that. In the Middle Ages, the ability to read and write was an outstanding feature. The scientific circles were very narrow, and people had a tendency to refer to some works without any referring because “everyone already knows what it was about.”
The issue of stealing and plagiarism is actually stealing another author’s text, which was also known a long time ago. However, the centuries before, it was not so complex due to the narrow scientific circles, and hence it was easier to define if someone plagiarized someone. The ability for education had a positive impact on society but also led to the development of plagiarism issues. The development of the technologies also impacted that because instead of rewriting or retyping text, nowadays, people might simply copy and paste.
Tips To Avoid Plagiarism Issues
So, what is our advice for you to avoid the issues with such an unpleasant phenomenon as plagiarism? Here they are.
- Don’t Plagiarize
Yes. Just so simple. If you were waiting here for tips on how to plagiarize and remain unnoticed with such cheating, this is not the place you can get help with that. Don’t plagiarize. Evidently, stealing part of another person’s text is morally wrong. As far as that doesn’t stop people, let’s consider a few other important reasons.
Contemporary plagiarism checker tools are highly developed and sometimes can see features of plagiarism even where there is no actual plagiarism. Hence, if you truly plagiarize, the probability of being caught is almost one hundred percent. After that, you will have zero for your assignment, and it is the most positive case. The worst option is saying farewell to your education.
A plagiarism checker that colleges use is very precise, and rules related to plagiarism are very strict. Due to that, we have prepared a few rules that will help you to avoid issues with this phenomenon that might appear accidentally or due to lack of attention. All people can make a mistake, but we don’t want to let your occasional mistake ruin your honest reputation.
- Cite Properly
The fact is that if you don’t cite something properly, such a case is also considered plagiarism. Due to that, it is vital to pay proper attention to the work you cite and how exactly you cite them. Even if you don’t put one quotation mark, that can already lead to plagiarism problems.
The best way to avoid issues with a college plagiarism checker due to such technical things is to work on them beforehand. Collect the quotations that you are going to use, make your works cited page, put quotation marks and names of the authors near the citations. You can simply delete the text or sources that you decided not to use later if such happens. But it is better to make references and form the citations beforehand than make a mistake with the source, overlook quotation marks, and get a problem with plagiarism that you don’t deserve at all.
The limit for direct quotations is already over, but do you still need more word count and have the source data from which you can incorporate? Don’t rush to the dark side of plagiarism, choose to paraphrase. All you need to do is write the idea from the source with your own words and put the reference to the authors.
In the beginning, this process can be a little complicated. You might think that the author already wrote everything as it has to be, and it is hard to change the words. However, after a few tries, the process became easier and easier.
We also do not recommend you to use free paraphrasing tools that you can find online. The only option for them is if you are an extremely tired and native speaker or speak the language at such a level (and you still will need to work on the text after using a tool). Paraphrasing tools are mechanical, and they often put synonyms instead of some word being enabled to see the details of the context. Hence, instead of paraphrasing, you highly likely get a funny or weird text.
- “Bad artists copy, good artists steal”
The phrase from the title belongs to Salvador Dali, and we transform her into “Do not copy the text, steal the ideas.” Of course, it is rather a joke, and no kind of stealing can be seriously related to academic writing, especially on the high levels. However, we understand that students are often overloaded with different tasks, and teachers and professors don’t expect the typical assignments to make a breakthrough in science.
Some assignments are typical, and you can even find online an example of a ready research paper, written according to the instructions you have. However, even if you find a ready work, don’t copy it or try to provide it as your own. As we already mentioned above, a plagiarism checker for teachers and students is a strict tool, and it will immediately show that you copied your work for the web. Instead of that, look at that work. Think about the ideas and structure. You can even pay attention to the sources that were used for it. Use the work that you have found as an example, and write your own essay on the basis of what you have seen.