We recommend that students focus on three areas of their writing to avoid plagiarism: APA citations, appropriately using evidence, and parts of the writing process. These areas, when taken together, help students appropriately include sources in their writing, particularly in an English academic writing context.
If you’re not feeling confident in these areas of your writing, you’re not alone. Many students begin their courses at Walden not knowing everything about APA citations, appropriately using evidence, or the writing process.
If you don’t feel confident in any of these areas, start with the overview below. Learn more about what we recommend for citing, using evidence, and the writing process in our webinar, Plagiarism Prevention: The Three Components to Avoiding Plagiarism. Then, explore our other in-depth resources listed in the menu on the left, ask questions, and practice.
APA citations: Writers must credit both the ideas and information they include in their own writing (through paraphrases), as well as any word-for-word phrasing they use from another source (through quoting). This means including citations for all paraphrases, as well as quotation marks and citations for all quotes.
Appropriately using evidence: Writers need to ensure they are successfully paraphrasing by using their own voice to represent sources’ ideas. This means writers should use their own sentence structure and word choice to successfully paraphrase.
Writing process: Writers should be careful during the writing process that they are keeping track of source ideas in their writing. This means carefully taking notes, remembering to always include citations where needed, taking care when paraphrasing, and making time to proof and revise.
Plagiarism can be an intimidating concept for many student writers. Everyone wants to avoid plagiarism, but it can be unclear what exactly plagiarism is and how to avoid it. Join the Writing Center for our three ways to avoid plagiarism in your writing. In this session you'll learn how to identify plagiarism, but then practical ways to avoid plagiarism in your own writing.
Note that these videos were created while APA 6 was the style guide edition in use. There may be some examples of writing that have not been updated to APA 7 guidelines.