Skip to Main Content

Plagiarism: Understanding and Avoiding It

This guide is intended to help students improve their understanding of how to avoid plagiarism in their writing and provide support for faculty's use of Demonstrations in this guide currently use the MLA 7th edition Handbook

Ask a Librarian

TEXT 936-229-3764

CALL 936-294-1614 or
1-866-NGL-INFO (645-4636)

Defining Plagiarism

How Does SHSU Define Plagiarism?

SHSU Code of Student Conduct and Discipline, section 5.3 “Academic Honesty” defines plagiarism as “the appropriation and unacknowledged incorporation of another’s work or idea into one’s own work offered for credit.”

Another’s work or idea can be anything; a book, an article, photographs, a drawing, music recordings, and concepts, images and text from the Internet.

Plagiarism Consequences

Consequences of Plagiarism

The consequences of plagiarism, unintentional or intentional, will initially be applied by your professor. The professor will review the suspected case of plagiarism and determine the penalty, which can range from a simple warning to expulsion from the University.

Students may appeal the penalty starting with the department chair, then the dean of the college, and lastly the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, whose decision is final.

Intentional Vs. Unintentional Plagiarism

Some educators distinguish between two types of plagiarism, intentional and unintentional.

Intentional plagiarism occurs when you knowingly and with forethought use another’s work, not giving them credit, and representing it as your own work. Examples of intentional plagiarism include using prewritten papers, cutting and pasting from works, not using quotation marks and not citing a source in a list of works used.

Unintentional plagiarism occurs when you fail to cite another’s work or idea properly, usually through inattention or oversight. Unintentional plagiarism examples are: not using paraphrasing correctly, not using quotation marks correctly, and through carelessness omitting an item from a list of works used.


Newton Gresham Library | (936) 294-1614 | (866) NGL-INFO | Ask a Question | Share a Suggestion

Sam Houston State University | Huntsville, Texas 77341 | (936) 294-1111 | (866) BEARKAT
© Copyright Sam Houston State University | All rights reserved. | A Member of The Texas State University System