How To Check Your Essay For Plagiarism

Plagiarism is when you copy the work of someone else and you claim it as yours. In school it can be difficult to toe the line between plagiarism and citing sources. This is why most school policies on academic integrity emphasize proper source citation.

Double Check Plagiarism Policy

If you wrote the article yourself and you are looking to check your essay for plagiarism in an effort to make sure that the work complies with your academic integrity policy there are a few different ways. The first is to review with a teacher or TA. You can do this yourself initially but it is always better to have two eyes instead of one. You can take your particular formatting requirements and read over the content you have to make sure that you are using the formatting correctly. Start by skimming the citations you already have and double checking that they are done correctly. There are many websites that can do this automatically but it is still good to double check manually.

Proofread for Citations

Once you have done that you want to go back through your work and look for any sentences that have information without a citation. If you have a sentence where a statistic is written out or data exists but there is no citation chances are it will be considered plagiarism. Even if the work is a study you conducted you still need to reference it. If you are using a paper you previously wrote you still need to cite it. Most schools consider it plagiarism even if the work you are copying is yours. That is why you need to cite it. A citation allows you to use the work.

Use Websites

Then there are websites you can use where you put your text inside their text box and they will scan it to see if there are other results on the internet already published. This is of course only food for results published online and won’t find content copied directly from a book or journal article that is not published. That is why you must combine all of these methods to ensure there is no plagiarism. These websites will scan the content and use a computer algorithm to locate more than 3 words in a row that exist elsewhere. If there are results that pop up you can check to make sure those areas of text have been properly cited. Doing all of this will make sure there is no plagiarism.

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