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Citing your sources

A guide to proper citation in research papers


All academic research builds on the work that went before it. No matter what your research subject, it is very important to appropriately credit the sources of the ideas that you express in your papers. 

All academic papers need to include a Bibliography, Works Cited, or List of References, with in-text citations that refer to the identified sources. However, various academic disciplines have different conventions for what style to use.

Using this guide

Your instructor will usually tell you what citation style he or she expects you to use. The most common citation styles used by undergraduates are MLA, Chicago and APA. 

To find style manuals that show you how to format your bibliography and cite your sources, go to Style Manuals

To learn about bibliographic management software applications, go to Software

For websites on specific citation styles and how to avoid plagiarism, go to Additional Resources.

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