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How to Rewrite Source Material

To use another person's words or ideas without listing that person as the source is plagiarism. You may have heard this, but are not aware if what you have written is "borrowed" or not. Below is an excerpt from a test, as well as examples of plagiarism of that excerpt.

Original

Sociology began to take its present from only about a hundred years ago. The roots of the discipline reach back to the eighteenth century. this period of European history is called the Enlightenment. (Popenoe, David. Sociology. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall, 1989.)

Plagiarism 1

Sociology began about a hundred years ago. Its roots reach back to the eighteenth century. In Europe's history, this time period is The Enlightenment.

Plagiarism 2

About a hundred years ago, Sociology began to form. The eighteenth century holds the roots for this discipline. The Enlightenment is the name for this period of European history.

Plagiarism 3

During the Enlightenment, about a hundred years ago, Sociology as we know it today, began to take its form.

*Notice that all the italicized words are directly from the original. Changing the words around does not solve the problem. That is still considered plagiarism! You must tell your audience the source of information, whether it is a direct quote, indirect quote, paraphrase, or summary.

Below are two samples of the excerpt correctly documented.

Correct (using direct quotes)

David Popenoe, anoted expert, defines the beginning of sociology this way, "The roots of the discipline reach back to the eighteenth century." (8) He also says, "This period of European history is called the Enlightenment." (8)

Correct (using a paraphrase)

In the 1900's, many people were interested in our ability to reason. A noted sociologist, David Popenoe, believes that during this time, the field of sociology was established. (8)

*Remember the source and page number must be included after you have cited from another document.

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