Plagiarism can be considered an academic offence.Many institutions define plagiarism in different ways.The following definitions have been advanced to explain plagiarism:

In the first definition, plagiarism implies the use of an academic source without giving credit to the author.This is the most common definition.Most students use their sources without proper citation.This amounts to plagiarism.

Yale University views plagiarism as the “… use of another’s work, words, or ideas without attribution,” which includes “… using a source’s language without quoting, using information from a source without attribution, and paraphrasing a source in a form that stays too close to the original.”

Princeton perceives plagiarism as the “deliberate” use of “someone else’s language, ideas, or other original (not common-knowledge) material without acknowledging its source.”

Oxford College of Emory University characterizes plagiarism as the use of “a writer’s ideas or phraseology without giving due credit.”

Brown defines plagiarism as “… appropriating another person’s ideas or words (spoken or written) without attributing those word or ideas to their true source.”

Avoiding plagiarism is a simple task.Effective paraphrasing is key to successful writing.All sources must be properly cited to avoid cases of plagiarism.Another approach to avoiding this menace is by use of software that scan papers for plagiarism.These software are not 100% effective.Writers are therefore advised not to solely depend on them.Examples of such software in use include Grammarly,Turnitin and Copyscape,just to mention but a few.In my subsequent posts i will be talking about referencing and steps to effective paraphrasing.Cheers!!!