Citation and the lack thereof, plagiarism is the academic version of copyright. Plagiarism occurs when you borrow another's words (or ideas) and do not acknowledge that you have done so. In this culture, we consider our words and ideas intellectual property; like a car or any other possession, we believe our words belong to us and cannot be used without our permission. The best way to avoid plagiarism is to cite your sources - both within the body of your paper and in a bibliography of sources you used at the end of your paper.
You must cite:
Facts, figures, ideas, or other information that is not common knowledge
Ideas, words, theories, or exact language that another person used in other publications
Publications that must be cited include: books, book chapters, articles, web pages, theses, etc.
Another person's exact words should be quoted and cited to show proper credit
When in doubt, be safe and cite your source!
About MLA Style
MLA (Modern Language Association) citation style is primarily used in modern languages, cultural and humanities disciplines.
The most current edition (9th) of the MLA Handbook was published in 2021.