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Westcourt iCentre: Referencing, Copyright & Plagiarism

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Copyright and Plagiarism

Copyright & Plagiarism

Several similar but distinct concepts serve to cover the idea of copying and intellectual property.

It is important to understand the differences.


Copyright is a set of legal rights covering creative works. You do not have to apply for or register for copyright, it's automatic.


Plagiarism is not a legal issue - it's an ethical one. It is taking someone else's work, or more usually ideas, and claiming they are your own. This is most often seen in school or academic work - for example using ideas from someone else's paper or book without attributing them.


Copyright has an expiration date.

Plagiarism has no such expiry. 


Know the symbols



Information about Creative Commons

Search tools for finding Creative Commons and Open Access resources

These sites have material which is searchable by how they can be used, including whether they are under a Creative Commons licence:

  • Openverse – search engine hosted on WordPress (formerly CC Search)
  • Google advanced search – Google advanced-search allows you to search for material based on its “usage rights”
  • Yahoo! advanced search – Yahoo! advanced-search allows you to search for CC licensed material only
  • Flickr – allows you to search the Flickr photo archive for CC material

Web resources where all material is CC licensed or open access text


  • Openphoto – a moderated photo community with over 3000 CC licensed photos in various categories


  • CCmixter – CC sound remix tool and archive
  • Magnatune – CC record label
  • Jamendo – CC music distribution site
  • CChits – collaborative podcast where users can contribute, find and share music under CC licences
  • Artistserver– music community


Web resources where some material is CC licensed or open access images


ACADEMIC INTEGRITY - What is Plagiarism?


When submitting a research assignment, essay, or investigative report, students are expected to acknowledge all sources of information used following APA 7 (American Psychological Association) citation style.

  • A reference or citation refers to a resource from which an idea or direct quotation has been taken. An ‘in-text’ reference, citing the author and date, is placed in the sentence or below a quotation inside curved brackets.

  • A Reference List is an alphabetical listing of all resources that have been referenced in the text of the report, essay or assignment.

  • A Bibliography is an alphabetical listing of all resources that have been used, including all those referenced in the text of the work. It is placed at the end of the report, essay or assignment

Referencing: the basics

CiteWrite - Free QUT resource

Creative Commons



Creative Commons refers to a way of assigning a particular type of Copyright licence to a piece of work, so that other people can legally reuse it, but with certain guidelines specified by the creator of that work.

If you're looking for content that you can freely and legally use, there is a giant collection of cc-licensed  material available to you.  There are hundreds of millions ofworks - from images, songs and videos to scientific and academic material - available to you for free and legal use under the terms of our copyright licenses.

Watch the slide show below to find out more about Creative Commons.