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Plagiarism and Copyright: What is Plagiarism?

Plagiarism Flow Chart

PowerPoint about Identifying Plagiarism

What is Plagiarism?


The most basic definition of plagiarism is taking the ideas, words, or works of another person and presenting them as your own, either through copying or improper citation.

In today's academic environment, there are many ways to commit plagiarism. You could buy, borrow, or steal a paper; copy large sections of text from a book; or fail to cite your sources.

One very important point about plagiarism is that it's not always an act you MEANT to do. Sometimes you plagiarize without knowing it!

We can say that plagiarism is either . . .




Regardless, you can still get in trouble for plagiarism!


In high school, you can receive failing grades for assignments if you plagiarize. In college, you can be expelled from your school if you plagiarize multiple times.

See our Student/Parent Handbook to learn more about our Honor Code and Honor Code Committee

Interactive Resource for Avoiding Plagiarism

LibGuide Sources

Information and links on this Libguide available with permission from:

Benton High School

Shepaug Valley School

Montgomery Bell Academy

Honor Code Coat of Arms

As I strive to pursue excellence at The Meadows School,
  • I will treat my school, teachers, and classmates with honor and respect.

  • I will respect others’ intellectual and physical property.

  • I will not give or receive unauthorized assistance for any assignment or assessment.

  • I will not copy assignments from others, nor allow others to copy my work.

  • I will ask my teachers questions to clarify what is required.

  • On all of my work, my name affirms my honor.

Guide template courtesy of

Angela Klausner, Librarian at Montgomery Bell Academy