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Is It Plagiarism to Reuse a Paper?

Is it okay to recycle a paper?

In college, when you are working towards a specific degree, you may have to take classes that are similar to each other. In some cases, you may even have to write a paper on the same topic that you wrote about before in a previous class. You may wonder if you can just reuse the same paper that you wrote before, but that brings up another question: Is it plagiarism to reuse your own paper? Yes, it can be for the following reasons.

  1. You are guilty of plagiarism not only when you blatantly copy someone’s words and ideas without giving proper credit, but also when you claim that you did the work yourself. If you just reuse a paper you already did, you’re not doing the work. Some people will argue that this is not plagiarism because it’s your own work, but the plagiarism software checkers that professors use these days won’t see it that way. You need to provide proper attribution even when you are using your own previous work. Better yet, write a new, original paper about the topic.

  2. You’re reusing ideas and words that you’ve already used before. Self-plagiarism does exist. Could you just take the old essay and rewrite it so it’s not an exact copy? You can, but it will still be plagiarism if you use it and don’t properly cite the ideas that are the same in both papers. Professors want you to use original ideas for each paper that you write, even for similar topics.

  3. Your professor can perform plagiarism checks and see the previous submission of your paper in the system. One way this is done is when the paper is turned in both times through turnitin.com. Plus, your university may have other internal methods of determining if you’ve turned in the same paper before.

  4. According to WriteCheck, “self-plagiarism may also fall under possible copyright infringement” (http://en.writecheck.com/self-plagiarism/). This may happen if you’re a graduate student whose paper has been published in an academic journal. When that happens, the copyright may be with the academic journal, not you - the person who wrote the original paper. It’s still possible to use the material in a new paper, you would just need to properly cite that specific academic journal.

For example, a student is a history major in college. They take one class centered around the American Revolution in the Fall semester. They take another class also focused on the American Revolution in the Spring semester. For the first class in the fall, they write a paper that is focused on the Yorktown Campaign. Then, during the Spring semester, they get an assignment in the American Revolution class they are taking at that point for the same topic. The student decides to save time and just turn in the same paper that he wrote in the Fall. Here, he is committing an act of plagiarism.

What this student should’ve done is write either a completely different paper on the Yorktown Campaign, or a paper centered on another event or person associated with the American Revolution. For instance, they could write a paper on George Washington’s role in the American Revolution, or on one of the significant events that led to the American War against the British.

However, when you have to write a second paper on the same topic, there are going to be some similarities because there is common knowledge about each topic. Common knowledge does not count as plagiarism, even if you addressed it in both papers. If we consider the example above, there are aspects of the Yorktown Campaign that are found in nearly every book about the subject.

Get Help with a Paper - Never Resold!

Many students nowadays choose to get professional help by buying papers online. But they need to be careful because they could end up buying a paper that is not original. Is it plagiarism to reuse a paper, particularly a paper that was bought? When you buy an already completed paper, or buy a supposedly custom paper from a non-trustworthy custom paper service, you run the risk of being caught with plagiarism. You’re reusing the paper you bought if the exact same paper has been sold to other people, not just yourself.

The best option is to write a new paper that is different from any other work that you have done. However, if you have a lot of work and have a pretty good grasp on the material you are learning in class, there are trustworthy and reliable custom academic writing services out there. Prescott Papers is one such company.

All papers produced by the academic and professional writers at Prescott Papers are original papers that have no plagiarism. When you place your order, you can indicate that you wrote a paper on the same topic before, and even provide the original paper with instructions that the new paper on the same topic not have the same ideas as the first paper. The writer of your paper will be someone who has academic and/or professional expertise in the topic of your paper. They’ll be able to come up with unique content that was not addressed in your first paper. The writer will know how and when to include proper citations in a paper.

Also, if you are considering using Prescott Papers for the first time, and want to be sure that they will produce a unique paper before paying them any money, Prescott Papers does allow you to do just that. We can start on your paper, and show you a custom preview before you pay us any money. Then, you can see that it will be an original paper.

Bottom line, don’t reuse a paper that you already used before in a previous class. If you decide you need to use parts of the original paper, you need to provide proper citation to yourself. If you need help, Prescott Papers is the best choice for original content on each paper.

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