What is a Citation?

What is a citation?

A "citation" is the way you tell your readers that certain material in your work came from another source. It also gives your readers the information necessary to find that source again. This information includes:

  1. Information about the author(s) or editor(s)
  2. The title of the work
  3. The name and location of the company that published your copy of the source
  4. The date your copy was published
  5. The page numbers of the material you are referencing


Why do I Cite?

Why should I cite sources?

Giving credit to the original author by citing sources is the only way to use other people's work without plagiarizing. But there are a number of other reasons to cite sources:

  1. Citations are extremely helpful to anyone who wants to find out more about your ideas and where they came from.
  2. Not all sources are good or right for your project -- your own ideas may often be more accurate or interesting than those of your sources. Proper citation will keep you from taking the rap for someone else's bad ideas.
  3. Citing sources shows the amount of research you've done.
  4. Citing sources strengthens your work by lending outside support to your ideas.


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