The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

Michael W. Schwartz

Second Advisor

John P. Madden

Third Advisor

Carol A. Mohrbacher

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

sources, citation, scaffold, plagiarism, awareness, citation, APA


When acknowledging scholarly and other sources in academic writing, ESL students at American universities face different challenges from the ones their American counterparts face. Cultural differences and low writing proficiency in English are the main reasons why plagiarism is such a complex issue to address by ESL teachers. The development of appropriate strategies for acknowledging sources effectively is a process that requires multiple instructional activities in order for students to fully master the most basic standards. This study will evaluate ESL students’ perceptions on the importance of acknowledging sources effectively. The development of their perceptions will be assessed before and after they carry out some instructional activities on the topic of plagiarism. These activities are intended to scaffold students’ learning of quotation criteria and to progressively develop students’ awareness of the importance of appropriate acknowledgement of sources.



“Jamás renuncies a tus sueños ni los dejes atrás. Búscalos; hazlos tuyos y a lo largo de toda tu vida atesóralos sin dejarlos jamás escapar.” Elisa Contanza

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will stablish your plan.” Proverbs 13:3.

I would first like to thank my thesis advisor Dr. Michael Schwartz of the School of English at SCSU for the unconditional support throughout the process of writing. Not only he always supported me during the writing of my thesis, but as my teaching assistantship coordinator he always encouraged me to make the most of my experience in graduate school.

I would also like to thank the experts who were involved in the validation for this thesis, as second and third reader: Dr. John Madden and Dr. Carol Mohrbacher. Without their passionate participation and very valuable comments, this thesis could not have been successfully accomplished.

I would like to thank the Newman Center Catholic Student Community for their spiritual guidance during my time at St Cloud State University. Also, I could not have made this journey without the support of my dear friends and my love, Jerome Louan.

Finally, I must express my very profound gratitude to my parents, Osvaldo Carnero and Isabel Roberto, and my sisters Maria and Rosa Carnero for providing me with unfailing emotional and financial support and continuous encouragement throughout my years of study and through the process of researching and writing this thesis. This accomplishment would not have been possible without them. Thank you.

Angelica Carnero