When thinking about plagiarism, there are several important ideas to keep in mind:
When most people think of plagiarism, they think of this type: the copying and pasting of exact words from one resource into a paper without proper acknowledgement of the original source. This usually happens when an author uses seven or more consecutive words from the original source without proper attribution.
Some people do not realize it, but the use of another person’s ideas restated for another academic endeavor without proper acknowledgement of the original source is also plagiarism. This usually happens when an author has summarized or reworded content from another source as evidence in their own work but have neglected to include proper attribution for the paraphrase.
Most people take exception to this, but if you reuse previously published or submitted material for a new paper or assignment without either properly citing yourself or without the explicit permission of your instructor this is considered plagiarism. This usually happens when authors forget to consider the ramifications of reusing old material rather than creating new, updated material that contributes meaningfully to the scholarly conversation.
Though it seems like an honest mistake, intentionally or unintentionally forgetting to include a correctly formatted citation, either in the body of the paper or in the reference list is plagiarism. This usually happens when the information to craft a citation is difficult to track down, or because the research process has been rushed out of necessity.
This can also seem like an honest mistake, but leaving out important information that allows readers to quickly, easily, and accurately identify the resources you used in crafting your paper is another form of plagiarism. It usually occurs when an author relies too heavily on citation software without double-checking the actual citation style requirements.