How to Check for Plagiarism: 10 Steps to a Fully Original Paper

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Consequences of Plagiarizing: Reasons to Use a Similarity Tester

Whether you are a student, researcher, academic or professional the fallout from plagiarizing can be pretty harsh, which is a good reason for knowing how to check for plagiarism. For students, the range of penalties includes:

  • Rewriting the paper that contained plagiarism
  • Failing grade for the assignment
  • Failure of the class for which the plagiarized paper was written
  • Suspension from school for a period of time
  • Expulsion from school
  • Loss of reputation by having plagiarism charges included in the student’s academic record. This can make getting accepted to another school difficult.
consequences of plagiarism for students

For researchers and those working in the academic field the repercussions of plagiarism can also be severe:

  • Loss of research funding. Grants for research may be pulled
  • Loss of job. The offender could be fired
  • Loss of academic reputation. A known plagiarizer will find it difficult, if not impossible to find another job in their field
  • Legal repercussions. Plagiarizers could be sued by those whose work they stole
  • Financial consequences. Plagiarizers may be required to make financial restitution to those whose work they copied

Professionals such as journalists and writers also face some serious consequences for plagiarizing:

  • Removed from their position. Firing is a possible result of plagiarizing
  • Professional reputation destroyed. Finding a position in the same field could prove difficult
  • Legal problems. A lawsuit could be filed for violating copyright laws
  • Monetary punishment. Restitution may have to be made to the offended party.

To avoid possible consequences you must know how to see if your paper is plagiarized and resolve any issues.

Guide on How to Check for Plagiarism and Fix It

To avoid the consequences of plagiarism students and others need to know how to find copied text in their papers and fix the problem. We have put together a guide on how to find and fix plagiarism issues in your text.

  1. Try a Google search. If you are concerned that just one or two sentences in your paper may be copied or are too similar to another document, one way how to check if you accidentally plagiarized them is to search for those sentences using Google. Enclose the sentences in quotation marks for an exact match.
  2. Use software to identify plagiarism in your text. There are many online plagiarism scanner tools that you can use to perform a text similarity check of your paper. Some tools only inform you that plagiarism exists, but others will identify the specific parts of your paper with duplicate content.
  3. Enclose duplicate text in quotation marks. One way to fix copied text is to enclose the material in quotation marks and properly cite the source.
  4. Paraphrase duplicate text. Rewrite duplicate text using your own words and phrasing without changing the meaning of the original. Cite the original source.
  5. When paraphrasing, don’t look at the original text. When paraphrasing to fix copied content doesn’t look at the original material. This makes it less likely that you will use the same words and phrasing as the original and produce a better paraphrase. Still, you must cite the source.
  6. Know the difference between facts that aren’t common knowledge and facts that are common knowledge. Common knowledge in academic writing is the knowledge that the average reader would know without having to validate it by checking a source. There is no need to cite common knowledge facts. Facts and statistics that aren’t widely known need to be cited. Proofread your paper to see if it contains facts that aren’t common knowledge that are lacking citations, and cite the source.
  7. Remove duplicate text from your paper. An easy fix to avoid plagiarism caused by duplicate text is to simply remove the offending phrases from your paper. This only works if the text isn’t essential to your paper.
  8. Know the citation style for your paper. Many plagiarism issues are the result of improperly cited sources. There are 3 major citation styles: APA, MLA and Chicago. Familiarize yourself with the style your paper should use and make sure all your source citations are properly formatted.
  9. Cite information taken from the internet. Many students assume that information that is freely available on the internet doesn’t need to be cited. That is incorrect. If your paper contains information you found online you need to make sure it is correctly cited.
  10. Proofread. It is old school and takes time but thorough proofreading of your paper may turn up citation issues and other problems that you previously overlooked.
how to check for plagiarism

How to Avoid Plagiarism in the Future Writing

The best way to deal with plagiarism issues is to avoid plagiarizing in the first place. The following are some suggestions on how to make sure your paper isn’t plagiarized in the future:

  • Cite all sources. Make sure to cite every source you use in your paper. Keep a record of every source that contains information you find of interest during your research, so you can refer back to it should you decide to include that information in your paper.
  • Cite while writing. Don’t wait until you have completed your rough draft to include citations. You may forget where you obtained some information, or miss a citation during your rewrite.
  • Include direct quotes. Using the exact wording of a source is okay as long as you enclose it in quotation marks and properly cite the source so the reader knows where the information came from.
  • Learn to paraphrase properly. Paraphrasing properly means completely rewriting the original content in your own words and phrasing without altering the meaning of the text. A proper paraphrase also includes citing the original source.
  • Inject your own ideas. An academic paper shouldn’t just be a giant collection of quotes and paraphrased material. It should present your own perspective and ideas. The quotes and paraphrased material are there to support your argument.
  • Use a duplicate text checker. Perform a unique content check of your paper to locate text similar to your own in other documents using a plagiarism tester tool like the one we provide. Online tools are the fastest way how to detect plagiarism in your writing.
how to make sure your paper isn't plagiarized

About Our Anti Plagiarism Checker

“How do I check my paper for plagiarism?” you ask. Our plagerism finder is an online tool that will perform a paper originality check of your document by comparing it to billions of web pages and millions of papers in our data base. After performing a scan the tool issues a report identifying any plagiarism issues such as similarities in text or improper citations along with recommendations on how to fix problems. The report includes an originality score of your paper and reference information on sources causing you text similarity issues. Our plagiarism checker is fast and works on any type of paper including essays, research papers, dissertations, book reviews, articles or any other form of writing you want to check. With its vast pool of sources to compare against and advanced algorithms, our text similarity tester is also very accurate so don’t hesitate to check your paper for duplicate content at the next available opportunity. 

Our duplicate content remover is the best way how to check for plagiarism and fix any issues, so give it a try and submit a completely original paper on your next writing assignment.