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Notes on Academic Integrity & Citation

Sociological Analysis/Sociology 212
Munshi/Fall 07

Notes on Academic Integrity & Citation

According to CUNY’s policy on academic integrity, “Plagiarism is the act of presenting another person’s ideas, research or writings as your own.” The following are some examples of plagiarism:

  • Direct copying/paraphrasing without citation/direct copying with footnotes.
  • Presenting another person’s ideas or theories in your own words without acknowledging the source.
  • Using information that is not common knowledge without acknowledging the source. (Queens College Sociology Website 2006)


What does this mean?  The policy on academic integrity basically means that when you want to share an idea that you got from a book, article, website, personal communication, or any other source, you must tell the reader where you found the information.  This allows the original author(s) to get credit for their writings, gives your ideas legitimacy, and also lets the reader know where to go to directly look up the information.  This means that you can not directly copy someone else’s words unless you are quoting them (which means putting their exact words in quotation marks and giving a citation with a page number—see below for more information).  It also means that you can not take someone else’s words and make small changes (with or without a citation)—you must re-write the ideas in your own words and provide a citation of the original source.

Examples

Original passage: This project is looking at the harassment and discrimination that women in immigrant communities face when they go to the legal system for protection.

UNACCEPTABLE:  This project is looking at the harassment and discrimination that women in immigrant communities face when they go to the legal system for protection.  The author is directly quoting the original passage without using quotation marks and without citing the original source.

UNACCEPTABLE: This project is looking at the harassment and discrimination that women in immigrant communities face when they go to the legal system for protection (Munshi 2006).  The author is directly copying the original passage without using quotation marks.  This is a problem even though the original passage is cited.  If the author is using exact words from the original source, they need to be in quotes.

UNACCEPTABLE: This project is looking at the discrimination and harassment that immigrant women face when they go to the legal system for protection (Munshi 2006).   The author only slightly changes the wording—the author needs to put the ideas in her own words.

ACCEPTABLE:  The legal system is not always a safe place.  This project will look at the risks that immigrant women face when they interact with the law (Munshi 2006) The author puts the ideas from the passage in her own words AND cites the original passage, since this is where the ideas came from.

ACCEPTABLE: One of the main goals of this project is to look at “the harassment and discrimination that women in immigrant communities face when they go to the legal system for protection” (Munshi 2006:1) The author conveys the ideas from the original passage in her own words AND uses quotation marks for a phrase that is directly copied from the original source AND includes the citation for the original passage.

How to Cite Sources

Academic disciplines have different citation formats.  We will use the citation guidelines that are used by the American Sociological Association. Below are some (made-up) examples for citing in your essay:

  • If the author’s name is in the sentence, then you can end it with just the year of the publication:
    • According to Smith, the media is a useful tool for social movements (2001).
  • If the author’s name is not in the sentence, then put their name and year at the end of the sentence:
    • The media is a useful tool for social movements (Smith 2001).
  • If your source has two authors, use both names (in, or after, the sentence):
    • According to Smith and Johnson, the media is a useful tool for social movements (2001).
    • The media is a useful tool for social movements (Smith and Johnson 2001).
  • If you are directly quoting someone, use quotes and give the page number after the year of publication:
    • According to Smith, the media is a “useful tool for social movements” (2001:24).


Every single source that is cited in your essay must appear in your bibliography, and vice-versa.  Generally, the format for books and journals on a sociological bibliography is as follows:

Book:

Last Name, First Name. Year.  Title of Book. City of Publisher: Publishing Company

McIntyre, Lisa J. (2005). Need To Know: Social Science Research Methods.  Boston: McGraw Hill.

Journal:

Last Name, First Name. Year.  “Title of Article.”  Journal Name.  Volume # (Issue #): Pages of article

Milgram, Stanley. 1963.  "Obedience to authority."  Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology 63: 371-8.

Additional Information

Writing Website: http://soc.qc.cuny.edu/robin/writesoc/

ASA Citation Info: http://www.calstatela.edu/library/bi/rsalina/asa.styleguide.html

http://www.skidmore.edu/academics/sociology/resources/writing_citation.html

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/research/r_docsocio.html

Work Cited

Queens College Sociology Website. 2006. “Report of the CUNY Committee on

Academic Integrity and the CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity.” July 29, 2006. (http://soc.qc.cuny.edu/ufs/final%20academic%20integrity.htm)


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