What is Plagiarism?

“Plagiarism is using others’ ideas and words without clearly acknowledging the source of that information”(Writing Tutorial Services, 2011).

Notice that it does not matter whether or not the failure to give credit is intentional. Any lack of credit, even accidental, is considered plagiarism.


At California State University San Marcos, the General Catalog (2012-2014) defines plagiarism as “intentionally or knowingly representing the words, ideas, or work of another as one’s own in any academic exercise” (93).
Plagiarism includes:
  1. The act of incorporating ideas, words, sentences, paragraphs, or parts thereof, or the specific substance of another’s work, without giving appropriate credit and representing the product as one’s own work;
  2. The act of putting one’s name as an author on a group project to which no contribution was actually made; and
  3. Representing another’s  artistic/scholarly works such as musical compositions, computer programs, photographs, painting, drawings, sculptures, or similar works as one’s own.
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California State University San Marcos 2010-2012 catalog.(2012).California State University San Marcos: San Marcos, CA.
Writing Tutorial Services, Indiana University. (2004, April 27).Plagiarism: What it is and how to recognize and avoid it. Retrieved from http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/pamphlets/plagiarism.shtml


Last updated 8/23/2012 by Sue Thompson
contact: sthompsn@csusm.edu