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What, Why & How

Protester with sign reading 'Citation Needed'Citations credit your sources when you use someone else's words, ideas or images in your own work. Citations contain standard elements and should have enough information for the person reading your paper to track down your sources.


Citations often include:

  • Author(s) Name
  • Book, Article and Journal Titles
  • Publication Date
  • Volume and Issue Numbers
  • Page Numbers


Why To Cite

  • Avoid Plagiarism
  • Give credit to and acknowledge the work of other researchers
  • Show your readers you've done adequate research on your topic
  • Provide a way for your readers to find your sources so they can read further on the topic


What To Cite

  • Anything that is not considered common knowledge
  • Ideas, theories or direct quotes from another person's work


What Style to Use

This table provides a general guide on citation styles commonly used for each discipline. Check with your instructor to find out what style they prefer you to use in your assignment.


Citation Styles By Common Disciplines

Psychology, Business, Criminology, Economics, Education, Sociology, Social Sciences



Literature, Humanities



Humanities, Social Sciences



Political Science



Legal Studies



Medical Sciences






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