1. Source of Ideas

A common misconception is that only the exact copying of words from a printed publication constitutes plagiarism. However, the requirement to acknowledge sources is much broader. In particular, it is important to understand that the source of ideas — opinions, theories, facts, etc. — as well as the exact words must be credited.

Sources of words and ideas come in many forms, all of which require proper attribution to avoid plagiarism. This web site focuses on plagiarism as it appears in student papers using written sources but the concepts can be applied to any type of source material.

Information sources can include:

  • spoken words such as conversations and interviews,
  • written words including email and web pages as well as published and print materials,
  • multimedia such as movies, music and photographs,
  • and any other way to express an idea including statistics, drawings, graphs, maps, etc.

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