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The Cochrane Collaboration takes measures to prevent, detect, and address plagiarised content in Cochrane Reviews. See Box 1 for a definition of plagiarism.

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There are special circumstances when similarity in text is expected in Cochrane Systematic Reviews by the nature of the type of work. These special circumstances may result in text similarity software, such as CrossCheck (Table 1), finding a high level of similarity of the Cochrane Review text with text from other article(s). High levels of similarity would not always be considered plagiarism. 

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A Cochrane Review is expected to be an original piece of academic work produced by the listed authors. Material copied from other sources may be used but should always be acknowledged. If direct quotes of more than a few words of original material are included, these should generally be indicated both by using quotation marks andby citing the source (citation alone is not enough). See examples in Table 2.

Table 2. Examples of correct citation
CitingThe study was successful (Griffin 1990); it confirmed previous findings (Howes 1995).
Paraphrasing: using own words and making the source clear from the referenceIt is the responsibility of systematic review authors to ensure the review conforms to Cochrane reporting guidelines including: declaring any potential conflicts of interest, that the review is free from plagiarised material and that all contributors are acknowledged (Wager 2011).
Using text verbatim Wager and colleagues proposed that authors should “...ensure that contributors are properly acknowledged, that potential conflicts of interest are declared, and that the review does not contain plagiarized material” (Wager 2011).

In Table 2, we state “It is the responsibility of systematic review authors to ensure the review conforms to Cochrane reporting guidelines including... (Wager 2011).” These are our own words, and the source is clear from the reference.  If we wanted instead to use a sentence directly from the Wager paper, we would have had to do so by using quotation marks, constructing a different sentence citing the reference in brackets immediately afterwards. For example: 

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