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This Guide was created as a joint project of the Academic Resource Center and the William H. Hannon Library.

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Using and Citing Sources


What is citing and citations?

  • Citations can be a quotation from or reference to a book, paper, or author, especially in a scholarly work - OED Online
  • Citing a source means that you show, within the body of your text, that you took words, ideas, figures, images, etc. from another place - MIT Libraries

  • Citations are a short way to uniquely identify a published work (e.g. book, article, chapter, web site).  They are found in bibliographies and reference lists and are also collected in article and book databases - MIT Libraries

Why cite sources? (From Arizona State University)

  • Citations credit the author of the original work who provided you with the information or idea
  • Citations allow your audience to identify and find the source material in order to learn more about your topic
  • Citations give your paper more credibility because it shows you're supporting your arguments with high-quality sources
  • Citations help you avoid plagiarism & demonstrate your integrity as a responsible researcher and participant in your field of study 

APA Style
MLA Style
Chicago Style
Other Citation Styles