抄襲指的是將他人所貢獻的作品，在沒有提供足夠的作者權益資訊之下，將其語言以及思想變成是自己的作品。劍橋大學將抄襲定義為："submitting as one's own work, irrespective of intent to deceive, that which derives in part or in its entirety from the work of others without due acknowledgement."
所有來源會以行內引用進行標註，一般會以腳註的方式來進行引用（請參考引用來源）。In addition to an inline citation, in-text attribution is usually required when quoting or closely paraphrasing source material（例如：「約翰·史密斯寫到，這個建築物看起來很壯觀」，或是「根據史密斯（2012年）的文獻......」）。The Manual of Style requires in-text attribution when quoting a full sentence or more. Naming the author in the text allows the reader to see that it relies heavily on someone else's ideas, without having to search in the footnote. You can avoid inadvertent plagiarism by remembering these rules of thumb:
- "What Constitutes Plagiarism?", Harvard Guide to Using Sources, Harvard University: "In academic writing, it is considered plagiarism to draw any idea or any language from someone else without adequately crediting that source in your paper. It doesn't matter whether the source is a published author, another student, a Web site without clear authorship, a Web site that sells academic papers, or any other person: Taking credit for anyone else's work is stealing, and it is unacceptable in all academic situations, whether you do it intentionally or by accident." The university offers examples of different kinds of plagiarism, including verbatim plagiarism, mosaic plagiarism, inadequate paraphrase, uncited paraphrase, uncited quotation.
- "University-wide statement on plagiarism", University of Cambridge.
For subject-specific guidelines, see "Guidance provided by Faculties and Departments", University of Cambridge.
- For example, Smith 2012, p. 1, or Smith, John. Name of Book. Name of Publisher, 2012, p. 1.
- "What Constitutes Plagiarism?", Harvard Guide to Using Sources, Harvard University (see "Uncited paraphrase" and "Uncited quotation").
There may be exceptions when using extensive content from free or copy-left sources, so long as proper attribution is provided in footnote or in the references section at the bottom of the page.
- See Wikipedia:Manual of Style#Attribution: "The author of a quote of a full sentence or more should be named; this is done in the main text and not in a footnote. However, attribution is unnecessary with quotations that are clearly from the person discussed in the article or section. When preceding a quotation with its attribution, avoid characterizing it in a biased manner."