Skip to main content
Banner Image

Citation Guides for Print & Electronic Resources: Citing

Citation resources

Citation Management Software

Citation management software allows users to create their own personal database of references, adding automatically-formatted citations to documents.

Why Cite Sources?

“Most of our ideas are based on sources somewhere in history,” says Wayne Booth in The Craft of Research (195). And we know it’s true because we copy and paste text all the time, and we often repeat without hesitation things we’ve heard or seen elsewhere. The Khalid Albaih, "A Conversation," retrieved from: www.flickr.compoint is that we rely on other people’s ideas and the research of others for practically everything we think or say. 

Academic writing pushes this realization further by asking us to think about what we are doing before passing it on. Crucially, our arguments and explanations can be enhanced by openly engaging with their contents and sources. Of course, this involves investigating our ideas and doing research.  Citing one's sources is simply a way of documenting the path of one's inquiry so others can see.

As a rule, you should cite everything you quote, paraphrase, or summarize, as well as someone else’s ideas or words that are not your own, such as may be copied from the Web or anywhere. Doing so accurately will help protect you from a charge of plagiarism, it will help readers evaluate the quality of your work, and it’s an opportunity for you to honor your sources and/or showcase your research (195-196).

Citation Styles

Getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines. Try the resources listed below to help you in that endeavor, or ask us for assistance in person or remotely.

The MLA style is commonly used for writing in the humanities, because it is believed that brief parenthetical citations placed within the text facilitate continuous reading, which is a priority in the humanities.

Getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines. Try the resources listed below to help you in that endeavor, or ask us for assistance in person or remotely.

The APA style is commonly used in the sciences, because it is believed that use of an author-date system, in which the author's name is abbreviated (last name, first initial), facilitates concision and the conveyance of the latest research.

Getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines. Try the resources listed below to help you in that endeavor, or ask us for assistance in person or remotely.

Chicago style is commonly used for writing in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. It offers two citation formats, the author-date system, or the notes-bibliography system, each of which offers conventions for organizing footnotes or endnotes, as well as bibliographic citations. Chicago style facilitates the denotation of scriptural, classical, archival, and other historical sources. 

Getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines. Try the resources listed below to help you in that endeavor, or ask us for assistance in person or remotely.

Turabian style, most commonly used in the social sciences, is adapted from Chicago style and simplified for students and researchers.

Getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines. Try the resources listed below to help you in that endeavor, or ask us for assistance in person or remotely.

CBE/CSE style gets its name from the Council of Biology/Science Editors, and it is commonly used in the sciences. After 2000, the CBE style was renamed as CSE. Its two main formatting styles are the Citation-sequence system or the Name-year system.

While getting a citation right is simply a matter of following style guidelines, government publications can be a little tricky. Most style guides provide their own instructions for formatting citations to government publications, such as the MLA and APA style guides listed on the previous tabs. 

A few additional resources are listed below to help you just in case; or ask us for assistance.

Loading

Subject Guide

Shain Library Reference
Contact:
Charles E. Shain Library
Connecticut College
270 Mohegan Ave.
New London, CT 06320
(860) 439-2655