In short, Plagiarism is using someone else's word or ideas without giving appropriate credit. It is considered academic dishonesty and the penalties for plagiarizing can range from getting an F on an assignment to more severe disciplinary measures. Avoid plagiarism by learning to correctly cite your sources any time you borrow from someone else.
Tips to avoid plagiarizing:
Provide citations for all information that isn't your original idea, thought or verbiage.
Use quotation marks or block text for all direct quotes.
Sharpen your paraphrasing skills by practicing outside of the writing process just like you would any other skill. Learn to communicate someone else's thoughts without using their words while keeping the spirit of their quote..
Provide a References or Works Cited page for all assignments, projects or research that includes information that was not your original idea.