University of Oregon

Plagiarism - Citing Sources

Librarians recommend:

  • Include the student-focused Plagiarism - Giving Credit Where Credit is Due website on your syllabus.
  • Let the students know that Blackboard incorporates SafeAssign, an anti-plagiarism software.
  • Give students a range of specific research paper topics rather than a general topic.  If students propose their own topics, do not accept broad or general topics.
  • Require students to submit a photocopy or printout of the first page of the materials (journal articles, books, primary sources, webpages) used in their papers. 
  • Include the Citation Style Guides ( on your syllabus or assignment handout to make proper citing easier for students. It also lists where to find the complete style manuals in the UO Libraries.

Detecting Plagiarism

The following tips are helpful in detecting various forms of electronic plagiarism:

  • Use Blackboard's anti-plagiarism software SafeAssign
  • Type some of the most unique questionable text into Google ( or another search engine.  Use quotes around a phrase if you suspect a verbatim quote.
  • If you have students turn their papers in electronically try changing the margins. Often, text pasted from electronic sources will have hidden or embedded formatting values that will stand out when the margins are changed.
  • Some students plagiarize from the abstract of an article in one of the Library's databases. Do a keyword/phrase search in the relevant disciplinary database or ask a librarian.
Created by jenkins on Jun 18, 2012 Last updated Sep 24, 2015
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