While writing an assignment, it is a common thing for students to scour the web looking for pieces of information to include in their work. There are myriads of websites and resources on the internet providing academic documents and literature, which are goldmines for students in a pinch. Now, it may be easy to think that content can simply be copy-pasted into your assignment, and you can be done with it, but that is simply not the case. The process of searching and researching the best possible content can leave some room for errors, especially when it comes to plagiarism.
Plagiarism is a grave offence in the academic world as it is considered to be a form of theft. If any case of plagiarism were to be found in your paper, there is a good chance that it might be rejected and possibly lead to further punishment. The article you spent hours, days, or even weeks working on can be thrown out in an instant, and that is a sufficient deterrent for any student wanting to score a higher grade. Although plagiarism might not be something that you voluntarily commit, the existence of plagiarized text in your assignment definitely sends alarm bells ringing. That is usually sufficient for assessors to depreciate your assignment, which is absolutely damaging to any student’s reputation. Scroll down to find some ways through which you can understand plagiarism, and find ways to reduce its occurrence in assignments.
No, you will not get away with it
Many students make the mistake of purposely leaving in plagiarized content under the belief that their assignment wouldn’t be rejected. However, that is a big gamble to take for a couple of reasons. Firstly, as soon as assignments are submitted, professors and instructors meticulously check each page for any signs of plagiarism. Nowadays, most colleges use software tools that can pinpoint the source of the content one has plagiarized.
In many cases, it is outright impossible to fool this software, as it thoroughly scans the text from beginning to end multiple times for greater accuracy. Also, any assignment that does get away with plagiarism can be caught sometime later in the future. The question of whether this would result in a lighter or heavier punishment can be left entirely up to debate.
Write like yourself
A significant reason why students appear to have plagiarized content is that they tend to write things in a general way. Although academic writing does need to have a uniform tone, the unique characteristics of writing are what sets assignments apart from one another. No matter what kind of articles you are writing, you need to inculcate a personal touch that differentiates your work from the rest. Just like everyone speaks in their own way through word usage and tone, the same rule applies to writing as well. If you’ve been writing creatively, then this process will be relatively straightforward. All you need to do is to grab a pen and write precisely what you are thinking.
Always provide citations
Unlike other forms of writing that involve information based on your perception or opinion, assignments need to be written based on concrete evidence, and links to that evidence need to be provided. If you think that your citations aren’t good enough, there is a good chance that it is the truth. In that situation, the most reliable course of action is to revise your citations and make sure that all instances of plagiarism are removed. Depending on the formatting style being used by your institution, or the institution you are writing for, the way to cite data can vary. Generally speaking, citations mainly involve author names and the dates of publications, and not citing correctly can be considered plagiarism.
Add your insights
Regardless of how good your sources may be, there needs to be some effort from your side demonstrated in your papers too. If you simply comb through your sources and write information already available, it would give the article a bland feel. Being the author, your views and perspectives on the topic are also needed, and your paper might even be judged for your opinions as well. Not adding your own insights shows that you haven’t really given interest and probably don’t know what you’re talking about. Your ideas need to serve as the glue which binds all the data and information together, and that can only be accomplished through exhaustive research and analytical progress.
Use plagiarism checkers
If you look around online, there are quite a lot of plagiarism checkers that are available that can be used to scan your assignments before submission. Depending on your requirements, you can either go for a free online tool that scans plagiarism, or purchase software that detects its instances for you. Although an initial investment wouldn’t really be suggested for all students, we recommend that you try to use free tools first, and then move onto premium software. You only have to upload your document and watch as the tool meticulously scans every line of every paragraph in your assignment. Usually, these tools highlight the text that is detected to have been plagiarized. Then, you can rephrase them, or provide references to the original sources.
Include a reference page
Towards the end of your assignment, there needs to be a reference page that contains references to all the information and data used while writing your assignment. This data might be from books, periodicals and even physical literature present in libraries. This makes it even more crucial to collect citations during your research process, as these resources may not be available to you online. In this situation, we suggest taking snaps of every source you get your information from, to make providing citations easier. Pictures are far better than lugging books around as you can readily access the sources wherever you are and would not have to browse through the pages.
Although you will be required to look at the work and writings of other authors in the course of writing your assignment, it is absolutely against the rules to use their words verbatim in your work. You might think that a particular sentence or paragraph couldn’t be written any better, but the goal here is to demonstrate your understanding, and not to rely on the rules of writing alone. After all, the primary objective of an assignment is for your professor to know your knowledge of a topic and to assess it. Rewording isn’t merely using synonyms and spinning the words, but understanding what is written and writing it down in your own way
Ask your instructors
In many cases, the ideal way to learn how to do something is to sit down with your teacher or instructor and have them guide you. It might be difficult approaching your teachers at first, but asking them questions and taking their feedback shows that you are willing to change and improve as a student. By considering your teachers as friends, and not adversaries, it is possible to form a strong teacher-student bond that benefits both involved. If you can’t get around plagiarism, it is worth the time and effort to ask your teachers at least once about the issue, before looking for online assignment help.