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Research Guides@Tufts

Pre-College Program: University Prep Program

This guide serves as library reference for the 2019 University Prep Program cohort


What is plagiarism? Broadly speaking, plagiarism is presenting another's work as your own.  Every academic institution requires students to properly credit work that is not their own.  You do this by citing sources that you've used (the links to the right discuss how to properly do that in your papers).

You must cite sources when:

  • Referencing someone else's opinions or research
  • Referencing someone else's creative work
  • Using and image or other media file that you did not create

Referencing material is when you:

  • Quote it directly
  • Paraphrase it
  • Summarize it

There are very few instances where you are not required to cite sources.  These include:

  • Referencing common knowledge
    • Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president of the United States.
  • Using your own thoughts or opinions
    • I believe it is wrong for the Unites States to use the metric system.
  • Summarizing historical overviews that appear in multiple sources
    • The United States Civil War was fought between 1860 and 1865.

Style Guides


Zotero is a tool for collecting, managing, and citing sources. It is a more robust, academic citation manager than most of the free web-based citation tools, as it was built by George Mason University's Center for History and New Media. But, it is still free, cross-platform, and open source.  Check this guide out for an in-depth look at using Zotero.