Rail yard background, from the Library of Congress

Connections

A Hypertext Resource for Literature

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Academic Honesty

Plagiarism is taking a passage or passages from another person's discourse, either word for word or in general, and incorporating them as your own into written work you offer for credit. Academic fraud of this kind violates the trust underlying a productive and enjoyable academic environment.

That said, good writing often uses the ideas and words of other writers extensively. To draw on other writers but avoid plagiarizing, use the following techniques.

  1. Direct Quotation: If you use the exact words or a writer you consulted, you must put their words in quotation marks and tell your reader where the quotation came from. For this class, use MLA or Chicago style as your citation format. If you have any questions about citation style, ask them as soon as they arise, so they do not become problems in the grading process.

  2. Indirect Quotation: When you summarize or paraphrase another writer, use phrases such as "According to ... " or "As ... argues" to tell your reader what you are doing.

  3. General Acknowledgment of Indebtedness: When your thinking has been influenced by a source in a broad way, but you do not have a specific place to acknowledge that influence, you need to let your reader know that with wording such as "Much of the following discussion is based on material found in ...." In most cases, however, one of the first two techniques works better than this one to let your reader know exactly what influence the cited writer has had on your writing.

  4. Bibliography List of Works Cited: This will allow you to list the specific sources you have used.

For more detailed information, refer to the Quotation and Citation section of Connections.

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