Plagiarism is the use of someone’s work or ideas and presenting them as your own. Plagiarism in a paper is the copying of a paragraph or a whole page from another resource or writing, without citing the source that was used. Checking for plagiarism requires deep knowledge of the subject and the tricks of an average plagiarist, some of which are obvious, and others are not. This article will tell you how to be on the alert and be able to identify the stolen work.
1) Know your subject. Your own knowledge and intelligence have an impact on the evaluation of plagiarism. How well do you know the subject? Are you sure that you have read or studied the subject enough so that you can notice when someone is using the sentences or ideas of another person without changing anything? With experience, you will start to recognize the spectacular examples of plagiarism. Even right after college, your own knowledge will help you understand when you are reading something that is a primary source.
2) Look for inconsistencies or “indicators of plagiarism.” Usually, a person who copies the content makes small mistakes, for example:
– Frequent use of the same words and its synonyms;
– Incorrect spelling can be an indicator of plagiarism;
– Unexpected high level of vocabulary knowledge.
3) Think about the coherence and readability of the text. From the readers’ point of view: is the work unique and easy to read or does it look incoherent, with sharply changing ideas and a sudden change of a style?
4) Check the punctuation. Punctuation can be an indicator of plagiarism since many people do not know punctuation rules. If the student has always had problems with punctuation and suddenly he began to use it correctly, this is an indicator of plagiarism.
5) Verify tenses. A change of the tenses in a paper, which seems incoherent and does not correspond to the student’s writing style, may be a sign of plagiarism in the written essay. The use of sentences with passive voice is always a good indication since many scholars tend to use passive voice in the text because they want to sound more reputable.
6) Check for plagiarism online. Start with Google. If you feel that the work or a part of it was copied, just cut an excerpt and paste it into a search bar. If the text was copy-pasted, Google will show the websites that contain the same content.
7) Use the websites that provide online plagiarism checkers. There are a lot of websites that provide verification of the text and review papers for free. Some of them are free, for example, Copyscape, Essay-review.org. Some websites are not available free of charge, such as Turnitin.