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Citation, Documentation, and Avoiding Plagiarism: Citing Your Sources

This guide provides information about what plagiarism is and how to avoid it. It also includes links to help you with MLA and APA citation format.

Why Cite Sources?

Each and every time information is taken from a source (whether it is taken as an exact quote, re-worded, or paraphrased) and used in a research project, credit must be given to the original source of information.  Typically, that is done in two ways:

  • parenthetical, or in-text citations provide a brief notation of the author, date and/or page number
  • lists of references, or works-cited provide complete publication or other information that would allow the reader to locate the complete source

Most research projects require both in-text citations and a list of works cited at the end of the project.

More Help with Citation Styles

Visit these websites for additional information:

Library Workshop Activities

MLA Documentation Guide

For examples of citations for books, periodicals, media, and online sources for a works cited page, look at the research guide MLA Documentation Help

Documentation Handouts

Check with your instructor to determine which style is required for your research project.  The handouts linked here provide examples for documenting the most commonly used types of resources.  (You will need Adobe Reader to view or print the first four PDF documents below):