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BUILD IT Express

A short version of the Bellevue University Information Literacy Development Interactive Tutorial aka BUILD IT


This module discusses the importance of citing sources and avoiding plagiarism.

The second page of this module demonstrates Using NoodleTools for your references and citations.

For more detailed information, see the full module CITING SOURCES in BUILD IT.


Plagiarism is taking credit for someone else's words or ideas,
intentionally or unintentionally.

This is not as simple as it sounds.

  • Most people know that copying information word for word without citing it is plagiarism.
  • But what if you paraphrase it?  Still plagiarism,if you don't give proper credit through citation. Otherwise you are taking credit for another person's ideas. 
  • Direct quotes need to be enclosed in quotation marks, as well as cited.
  • This also applies to using a unique phrase - use quotation marks and cite.
  • Graphs, charts, images, statisticsand so on, also need to be cited.

Some of these things could happen unintentionally if you don't completely understand the concept of plagiarism, or if you are simply careless. This is no excuse!

It is your responsibility to know exactly what constitutes plagiarism.


Is this my own idea?

  Or have I simply reworded someone else's ideas, 
  thoughts, or research?

  Don't forget, paraphrased passages need to be cited.

Are these all my own original words?

 Or am I using a distinctive term or phrase coined by  

  Distinctive words and phrases that are not original
  need to be in quotation marks and cited.

Is this a direct quote?

  Or has this been paraphrased and put into my own

  If you are using the exact words from your source,
  use quotation marks and cite.

  Paraphrased passages also need to be cited but are
  not enclosed in quotation marks.


Your reference should provide a path that will lead the reader to your source. Your reference should be complete enough that the reader (your instructor) can easily find the source that you used. Keep in mind that your instructor may want to check the accuracy of your information.

Therefore, the reference needs to contain all the basic information about the source. There are rules about how to arrange this information in your reference so that it is consistent. However, there is more than one style of reference. The most common styles are
APA (American Psychological Association)
 and MLA (Modern Language Association). Make sure you know which one your instructor wants you to use.


APA Publication Manual

 MLA Handbook

References can be complicated.  There are so many different types of sources, especially with the proliferation of electronic sources. How can you ever be sure you have cited your sources properly?

Fortunately, the Bellevue University Library has several tools to help you cite.

  • Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (BF76.7 P83 2020). This is the "Bible" when it comes to APA citations.
  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (LB2369.M52 2016). This is the "Bible"when it comes to MLA citations.
  • Citing Sources LibGuide, contains examples of the most common citations.
  • NoodleTools - a citation composer.  See next page.

There are also many credible websites you can consult. Here are a few:


If you think NoodleTools sounds like the best way to manage your citations,
take a look at the tips on the next page to get started