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Academic Integrity & Avoiding Plagiarism

What is Plagiarism?

According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, "plagiarize" means:

  • to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own: use (another's production) without crediting the source
  • to commit literary theft: present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source

MBU Policy on Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

Academic dishonesty jeopardizes the academic integrity of the University and is not keeping with Christian principles. It is considered to be a serious offense. Missouri Baptist University expects students to attach their names only to work or research which they have done themselves. Materials and sources must be properly documented. Students must prepare original work and research, present their own reports and papers, and take examinations without any assistance or aids not expressly permitted in the testing procedure.

Academic dishonesty includes, but not necessarily confined to: plagiarizing; cheating on examinations; submitting counterfeit reports, tests, or papers; stealing tests or other academic materials; knowingly falsifying academic records or documents such as transcripts; and submitting the same work to more than one class without consent of the instructors involved.

Academic dishonesty of any nature will result in disciplinary action, which may include receiving a failing grade on the work in question, failure in the course, or dismissal from the University. Additional information is available in the Missouri Baptist University Student Handbook.

When do we give credit?

A major key to avoiding plagiarism is to give credit when you use other people's work. This includes, but is not limited to what someone said, wrote, drew, emailed, etc. Professional organizations such as the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Modern Language Association (MLA) have published guidelines for citing sources. 

What needs to be credited:

  • Direct quotations from books, magazines, songs, etc.
  • Information obtained during an interview or conversation
  • Reprints of illustrations, charts, and other visual materials
  • Opinions and assertions of others
  • Reuse of images, videos, or other media

What does not need to be credited:

  • Your own lived experiences, thoughts, observations
  • Your own artwork, videos, etc.
  • Generally accepted facts (e.g. pollution is bad)
  • Common knowledge including myths, folklore, urban legends, etc.

Plagiarism Video

Published on September 2, 2014 by Brock Library. Retrieved from