to Source It: A Guide to Documenting your Work, published
by the Peel District school board, Plagiarism is the act of presenting
someone else's words or ideas as your own by failing to give
them credit. Academic dishonesty is a serious offence
and often results in a mark of zero.
While some students do this intentionally, many others do so
because they are disorganized. The best way to avoid
plagiarism is to be organized and to take good notes.
Always record the source information first - before you use
any ideas in your research. If you copy anything,
a good strategy is to highlight it so that you immediately
know the information is not yours!
When do I have to
cite my source?
The Peel District School Board
outlines when you have to cite your source:
When you use ideas, pictures, maps or quotations from other sources, you must give those
sources credit. Even if you paraphrase or summarize
the original, you still must give credit. All items
must be cited in the text of your essay with embedded citations
(also known as in-text citations), endnotes, or footnotes.
Also, each item must be described in more detail at the end
of the document in the "Works Cited", "References"
or, "Bibliography" page. The specifics for
citing will vary depending on the style that your instructor
requests. Failure to give credit to the original author
is considered plagiarism, which is a serious academic offence.
Most schools will assign a mark of zero to a submission that
is plagiarized. This may result in the loss of credit.
What must be Cited:
- Images, art, maps, photographs, charts
- Paraphrased information
- Summarized information
- Audio Visual Materials (music, radio, DVDs,
MP3 files, broadcasts, etc.)
What is not Cited:
- Your own ideas or analysis
- Primary Research (surveys that you conducted)
- Commonly known information (i.e. the earth
is round, we breathe oxygen, who the Canadian prime minister
So, what style of
citation do I use?
Ask your teacher what type
of citation he or she prefers. Generally, English and
History will use MLA, while science, social
science and the arts will use APA citation
The following are examples
used by the University of British Columbia to guide student
writing and avoid plagiarism:
This is an example of
plagiarism (in the form of paraphrasing). The boldface type
indicates the common words that are used in the original,
the plagiarized version, and the acceptable version.
From Sharon Venne's journal article "Understanding Treaty
6: An Indigenous Perspective", in Aboriginal and Treaty
Rights in Canada: Essays on Law, Equity, and Respect for Difference,
Ed. Michael Ash, Vancouver: UBC Press, 1997.
For an understanding of the relationship between the Treaty
Peoples and the Crown of Great Britain and later Canada, one
must consider a number of factors beyond the treaty's written
text. First, the written text expresses only the government
of Canada's view of the treaty relationship: it does not embody
the negotiated agreement. Even the written versions of treaties
have been subject to considerable interpretation, and they
may be scantily supported by reports or other information
about the treaty negotiations.
In order to understand the relationship between First
Nations Peoples and the government of Canada, one must look
beyond the written text of the treaties. First, the written
text expresses only the government of Canada's view of the
treaty relationship: it does not embody the negotiated agreement.
Even the written versions of treaties have been subject to
considerable interpretation, and they may be scantily supported
by reports or other information about the treaty negotiations.
Sharon Venne believes that written treaties are insufficient
in developing an understanding of the issues between the First
Nations Peoples and the government:
The written text expresses only the government of Canada's
view of the treaty relationship: it does not embody the negotiated
agreement. Even the written versions of treaties have been
subject to considerable interpretation, and they may be scantily
supported by reports or other information about the treaty
This viewpoint, however, has often made researchers disregard
the treaties, a dangerous tactic when discussing the issues
The acceptable version credits the original author for the
initial idea, and indicates, by indentation, the words that
are taken directly from the original text. Information regarding
the original text is offered so that readers can find the
quotation for themselves. The quotation is followed by the
student's evaluative comment and the quoted text is integrated
into the essay in an original line of thought.
Plagiarism...properly source your work! See below for details
on how to use citations...
CITATION MACHINE - THE LANDMARK
Citation Machine is an interactive Web tool
designed to assist teachers and students in producing reference
citations for crediting information from other people. You
1. Click the type of resource you wish to
2. Complete the Web form that appears with information from
your resource, and
3. Click Make Citations to generate standard MLA & APA
There are three basic ways
to cite a reference - embedded citations, footnotes or endnotes.
Use the following guidelines...
Recent publications favour the use of embedded
Lincoln's death did not draw any "nobler
expression" of national grief than Whitman's poem "O
Captain! My Captain!" (Rossetti 143)
Try to make a smooth transition between the
text and the quotation, by introducing the quotation appropriately,
for example by incorporating the author's name into your text.
e.g. As Flora Davis has noted, "..."(40)
When a quotation is greater than 2 lines or
2 sentences, indent 10 spaces (right and left) and use single
spacing. Do not use quotation marks.
When omitting a full sentence or more from
a quotation, use a period and 3 ellipses (. . .)with spaces in between.
e.g. According to Wade, the horse Clever Hans
"could apparently count by tapping out numbers with his
hoof. . . Clever Hans owes celebrity to his master's innocence"(1349).
Footnotes should be numbered
consecutively throughout the paper in Arabic numerals. Do
not use asterisks or other symbols. In your text, place footnote
numbers slightly above the line, following the quotation,
thus: "It has been observed that imagery is a topic which
belongs both to psychology and to literary I study."3
Separate footnotes from the body of the text by a solid line
(if keyed 20 spaces long).
A footnote must appear at the foot of the
same page on which it has been cited.
Indent footnotes 1" if handwritten, 5 spaces if keyed.
When using footnotes or endnotes always single space them
and leave a space between each.
n.p. means "no place" or "no publisher"
or both. n.d. means "no date".
Endnotes The notes should
appear on a separate page just before the bibliography; numbered
and in the order they appear in the text of your essay.
See examples of MLA and APA styles