Avoiding Plagiarism How to use MLA Style Guidelines to Cite Your Sources Jill Robinson, Librarian Learning Resource Center ITT Technical Institute – Morrisville,

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  • Avoiding PlagiarismHow to use MLA Style Guidelines to Cite Your Sources

    Jill Robinson, LibrarianLearning Resource CenterITT Technical Institute Morrisville, NCSeptember 2008

  • How do you define plagiarism?Some possible definitions:Citing someone elses words as your ownFailing to give credit to the original author or sourceUsing the words, ideas, images, or concepts of someone else without citing the original source

  • How ITT Tech defines Plagiarism:ITT Technical Institute defines academic dishonesty as the submission of work completed by another person as your own. All ideas, words, or work from others that are included in a students submitted work must be identified and cited. Failure to appropriately identify the ideas, words or work of others included in a students work is considered academic dishonesty and violates the conduct section of the catalog.

    Academic dishonesty may result in a zero on the graded activity, suspension and/or termination from one or more of the courses the student is taking, or the students entire program of study at the school

    (See page 10 of your Student Handbook)

  • Why use outside sources in the first place?Allows you to build arguments, using other peoples work as evidence to support or disprove a pointDemonstrates a knowledge and appreciation of important work already done in the field you are writing in/aboutSources allow you to verify your own work. It shows readers how you reached your conclusions.

    Courtesy of the University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin.

  • Plagiarism can come in many formsSources cited but still plagiarized (incorrectly using Citation Style Guidelines)

    Sources used but Not Cited


    Word Switch

    Idea (those not accepted as general knowledge)

    Metaphor or Creative Writing Style


  • To cite or not to cite?If in doubtCITE IT!Use a set of style guidelines, such as those offered by the MLA (Modern Language Association) to correctly cite your sources.

    This presentation offers advice on writing using MLA Style.

  • Your primary goal when citing a source is to allow your reader (e.g. the person who is grading/reading your paper) to be able to locate the sources of information you used.

    Include enough information so that your instructor can find your sources!THE GOAL:

  • Steps for Avoiding PlagiarismIntegrate your research into your assignmentPause each time you use another persons work and give credit to the original authorCreate a Works Cited page as the last page at the end of your paper or assignment

  • Integrating Outside Sources into your WorkYou can integrate an outside source into your work in 3 different ways

    Quoting keeping the original quote as is, using quotation marks

    Paraphrasing restating all of the information in the original source in your own words

    Summarizing rewording or restating the main idea

  • Pause to give credit to the original authorIn MLA Style, you should use parenthetical, or in-text citations, in the body of your paper or assignment.

    After quoting, paraphrasing, or summarizing a source, include identifying source information in parentheses.

    The purpose of in-text citations, should be to lead your reader to your works cited list.

    Example: He believes, To make the most of those skills, we need a more creative capitalism: an attempt to stretch the reach of market forces so that more companies can benefit from doing work that makes more people better off (Gates 41).This is a quotation from Bill Gates in Time Magazine.

  • Creating In-Text (parenthetical) CitationsExamples:

    Author known: (McCray 45).Two Authors: (McCray and Jones 77).Author name unknown, journal title used instead: (Computer Networking Today 22).

    Examples used in a sentence:

    He said, To make the most of those skills, we need a more creative capitalism (Gates 41).Bill Gates argues, To make the most of those skills, we need a more creative capitalism (41).In this instance, we already know who the author is, so we only need to include the page number.

    After using any borrowed information, enter a single space, then the authors last name (or the title if there is no author) and page number in parentheses.

  • Create a Works Cited listPut this page on its own sheet of paper at the very end of your paper

    You should include all of the resources you used, regardless of whether or not you directly quoted them

    Arrange the list alphabetically by authors last name, or the title if no author is listed

    Double space the list and indent any lines after the first line of the citation

    Create your bibliography as you write your paper, instead of waiting until you are finished

    See an example MLA Works Cited page here: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/557/14/

  • Citing WebsitesWhen citing a website, include the following information when available:

    Title of the site (underlined or italicized)Editor first name, middle initial, last name (if given)Any electronic publication info. available, including version number, date of publication, or latest updateName of sponsoring institution or organizationDate of individual access Electronic address (URL)

    Title of the Site. First name Middle name Last name. Electronic Publication Information. Sponsoring institution or organization. Day Month Year of access .


    Library of Congress. U.S. Government. 31 July 2005 .

  • Online (electronic) or Print?Just because you found your source in the Virtual Library, doesnt mean you necessarily need to cite it as an electronic source. Many resources are digitized from their original print publications for easier access.

    Rule of Thumb:If you are using a book, journal, magazine, or newspaper that you located using the Virtual Library, cite the source as a regular print resource.If you are using a source that you found using a search engine (Google, Yahoo, etc.), cite the source as an electronic source.If you are using a source available from a government website or some other sponsoring institution, association, or agency website, cite the source as an electronic source.

  • Resources You Should Use!Online Resources:

    KnightCite (http://www.calvin.edu/library/knightcite)**Remember to choose the type of source you are citing!!

    NCSUs Citation Builder (http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/lobo2/citationbuilder/citationbuilder.php)

    Virtual Library (http://library.itt-tech.edu)Click on Reference Resources, then choose Style Manuals

  • Resources in the LRCMLA Guide for Writers of Research Papers

    A Writers Reference by Diana Hacker

    Keys for Writers by Ann Raimes

  • PracticeHow would you cite the example as an in-text citation?How would you cite it in a works cited list?

    EXAMPLE 1:

    Author: Kim GuentherArticle Title: Web Site Management: Where Have all the Webmasters Gone?Journal Title: OnlineDate: March/April 2005Volume: 29Issue: 2Pages: 45-48

    Remember to try KnightCite (http://www.calvin.edu/library/knightcite)

  • More PracticeHow would you cite the example as an in-text citation?How would you cite it in a works cited list?

    EXAMPLE 2:

    Article Title: Computer Scientists and Database AdministratorsTitle: Occupational Outlook HandbookAuthor: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of LaborURL: http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos042.htmLast modified date: December 18, 2007Date accessed: September 18, 2008

    Remember to try KnightCite (http://www.calvin.edu/library/knightcite)