Skip to Main Content


Definition of Plagiarism

"Plagiarism consists of presenting the words or ideas of someone else as one’s own without appropriate acknowledgment. A variety of intellectual materials can be plagiarized, including works of art, music, computer code, and graphics, but paradigmatically plagiarism involves copying text or concepts from written works, whether fictional or nonfictional." 

The SAGE Encyclopedia of Business Ethics and Society (Vol 5., 2nd ed.)


Angelo State University describes Plagiarism as "the representation of words, ideas, illustrations, structure, computer code, other expression, or media of another or other resources as one's own and/or failing to properly cite direct, paraphrased, or summarized materials."

Self-Plagiarism is defined as the "submission of the same academic work more than once without prior permission of the instructor and/or failure to correctly cite previous work written by the same student."

Angelo State University Student Handbook, 2023-2024

                                         Graphic of thief with a net stealing someone else's idea.

Image by Freepik

Plagiarism is the theft of someone else's work or intellectual property and passing it off as your own.

Oxford English Dictionary

This can include:

  • Failure to cite Ideas, opinions, or theories that are not you own
  • Failure to cite facts, statistics, graphs, drawings and other pieces of information
  • Failure to quote and cite direct quotations
  • Failure to cite paraphrased content of spoken or written words that are not your own

from the Indiana University Writing Guide


Why is Plagiarism Bad?

                             The word Plagiarism inside a red circle with line through it.


Plagiarism is unacceptable for many reasons:

  • Handing in assignments that contain plagiarized content is cheating, a serious form of academic dishonesty
  • Plagiarism is unethical because it violates honor and ethics codes in academia and professions
  • Plagiarism is a breach of trust between student/professor, employee/employer, and writer/the scholarly community
  • Plagiarism makes it difficult for researchers and scholars to trace the original source in a scholarly conversation
  • Plagiarism is illegal when a violation of copyright laws occurs

Use your ASU login credentials to access this video.