Faculty and Student Views
Watch the video below to hear what faculty and students have to say about using and citing sources appropriately.
Video Transcript: Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
Tomika McIntosh, 2nd Year Student, Kinesiology:
It’s important to cite your sources when you’re doing an academic assignment so that whoever is reading it, like your professor, your TA or other students, when they’re reading it, they’ll know the information that’s yours and the information that you’re getting from outside sources, like articles, or books or even other Internet sources.
Michelle Wigham, 4th Year Student, Translation:
It’s important when you’re citing sources to show academic honesty because your professor needs to know that you aren’t just taking this from another website, you’re not copying and pasting this.
Diane B. Woody, PhD., Associate Dean of Teaching and Learning, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies:
As a faculty member and a scholar, citing sources allows me to acknowledge the other people who are participating in the discussion on the topic that I’m researching.
Kevin Reynolds, PhD., Sessional Assistant Professor, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies:
For students of course, it’s very important to cite sources because we faculty members want to know what it is, in fact, that you have read and you may need to make it abundantly clear to us where you have an original idea and where you are using someone else’s ideas to develop your own.
If you cite all of your sources, it makes sure that you avoid being accused of plagiarism and it also follows York University’s academic integrity policy which is a standard in scholarship.
Sabira Gulamali, 4th Year Student, Computer Science:
Quote it. Cite it. Because it shows that you – you’re being honest. You have to be honest because you could be, like, called in for, like, plagiarism.
It’s the fair thing to do. It’s giving credit to other people for the work they’ve done that’s helped shape my work and it’s a standard in academic work.
Susan Murtha, PhD., Associate Dean Teaching and Learning, Faculty of Health:
Think about it in terms of students today blogging or tweeting. They wouldn’t take someone else’s tweet and send it out as their own. And that’s why there’s the retweet function, right? You wouldn’t reblog a blog that wasn’t your own content. In fact, if you did that online, the blogosphere would really tear you apart.
When there are questions of plagiarism, very often the student’s defense was: “I didn’t know; I thought I was presenting my own idea.” And I think that that is a sincere defense in many cases but it’s not an acceptable one.
Do not be tempted to, like, copy something off the Internet ‘cause chances are they will find out. You won’t be the first one to have done it. You’ll get caught.
Tracking sources is the initial step and it’s really important because it’s only if you’ve accurately recorded what you’ve consulted that you’re in a position later on to prepare your bibliography. So tracking sources seems irritating and meticulous and picky at the outset but it’s a crucial step and it actually saves you time to do it as you go along.
I can find the tools on the library site, and usually there are tools like RefWorks or Zotero and those help you to keep track of all your information and to cite them properly making sure you’re using the proper styles.
I find one of the best things students can do is to create something like an annotated bibliography. So they have the reference right there, they summarize the article right there, so the two things are related together.
I also think that students start their papers too late. And this is something that would be echoed by all of my colleagues. Students too often start writing the paper the night before it’s due or even the week before it’s due and sometimes that’s just not enough to get to know the body of works that are relevant to your research and to then move from the research stage to the writing stage in an organized way.
If you ever have any questions about the citation style, you can always go to your professor, your T.A. There’s the writing centre, or even ask a librarian.