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Citing Sources

When you use or refer to a piece of outside information (an opinion, a quote, statistic, photograph, song, video. etc.) in your paper or project, you need to give credit to its creator. If you don‘t, you are implying that you invented that phrase, took that photo or wrote that song yourself which is plagiarism. The word plagiarism comes from the Latin word for kidnap. When you fail to give credit to the original creator, it’s like you’ve kidnapped his or her work and are trying to pass it off as your own.

Taking the time to cite your sources correctly will help you avoid plagiarism. It will also help you learn about the research process. No researcher or creator is an island. Every new invention, every new discovery, every new advance in science and art builds upon work that came before it. New research grows out of old research . When you cite your sources you are part of this process.

Your citations should lead your reader or viewer directly back to the exact sources you used. As you do your research, keep a record of all the information sources you use: books, magazines, encyclopedias, websites, internet databases, personal interviews.
What information do you need?

When gathering print sources for your research paper, note down the following:

  • Author name(s)
  • Title of book or magazine
  • Title of article( if any)
  • Number or volume ( if any)
  • Publication date, Publisher
  • Place of publication
  • Page(s) of any references or quotations you want to use

When gathering digital sources, note down as much of the following as is available:

  • Author(s), compiler, director, editor, narrator, translator names
  • Article title (if there is one)
  • Website name or name of the research database
  • Publisher/ Sponsor’s name
  • Date posted, last updated or Version
  • Date you accessed the site
  • URL ( If the rest of your information leads your reader easily back to your source you don’t need to include this. If in doubt though, include it.)

How to Cite Your Sources

You credit your sources in two ways: in the body of your paper (in-text citation) and at the end (Works Cited or Credits).

In-Text Citation
In parenthesis immediately after your exact quotation or restating of your source’s idea put the author’s name followed by the page number where you found the quote .

For example : “At the turn of the century, an increasing number of African Americans were pursuing higher education” (Stevenson 2).

If you mention the author’s name in the sentence you don’t have to include it again in the citation. For example: Stevenson notes that “at the turn of the century, an increasing number of Americans were pursuing higher education.” (3).

Every in-text citation in your paper needs to be included in your Works Cited page.

Guidelines for the Works Cited list

Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your paper

  • Center the words Works Cited at the top of the page
  • Double space every line.
  • Indent each entry after the first line.
  • List your sources alphabetically by the author’s last name or by the title of the source if there is no author.
  • If an author is cited more than once, don’t repeat his/her name. Arrange his/her works alphabetically.
  • Always include the medium of publication (Print, Web, Personal interview, etc.
Citing Print Sources
Book with one author Author’s Surname, First name. Title of Book. Place of

Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication.

Medium of Publication (Print).

Example Schaefer, Adam R. The Harlem Renaissance. Chicago:

Heinemann Library, 2003. Print.

Book with 2 or more authors(Cite the first author’s surname first. Cite other authors’ first name first. ) First Author’s Surname, First name and Other Author‘s

First Name (s) Surname (s). Title of Book. Place of

Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication.

Medium of Publication.

Example Mortenson, Greg and David Oliver Relin. Three Cups of

Tea : One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace One

School at a Time. New York: Penguin, 2006. Print.

Book with an editor Editor’s last name, first name, ed. Title of Book. Place of

Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication.

Medium of Publication.

Example Elledge, Scott, ed. Wider Than the Sky: Poems to Grow Up

With. New York: Harper Collins, 1990. Print.

Example:Individual work in an anthology(Include page numbers for the entire piece.) Yeats, William Butler. The Lake Isle of Innisfree.”

Wider Than the Sky: Poems to Grow Up With. Ed.

Scott Elledge. New York: Harper Collins, 1990.

148. Print.

Encyclopedia or Reference Book (If there is no author listed, start with the title of the article.) Author’s last name, first name. “Title of Article.” Title of

Encyclopedia or Reference book. Edition. Year of

Publication. Medium of Publication.

 

Example Hornsby, Alton. “African Americans: The Harlem

Renaissance and Other Achievements.” World

Book Encyclopedia. 2006 ed. Print.

Magazine ir Newspaer ArticleIf the there is no author listed, start with the title of the article. Author’s last name, first name. “Title of Article.”

Magazine or Newspaper Name. Day Month Year: Pages.

Medium of Publication.

Example Hall, Jane. “The Harlem Renaissance: a Cultural

Rebirth.”Cobblestone. Apr 2006: 3-7. Print.


Citing Digital Sources

Magazine or Newspaper article from a database Use this for any of the Research databases that you access through Searchasaurus or The Student Research Center Author’s last name, first name. “Title of Article.”

Magazine Name. Day Month Year: Pages. Title of the

Database. Medium of Publication. Day Month Year

that you accessed it.

Example Hall, Jane. “The Harlem Renaissance: a Cultural

Rebirth.”Cobblestone. Apr. 2006. History Reference

Center. Web. 20 Aug. 2009.

Website (the whole thing Author, editor or compiler, if available. Title. Version or

edition if available. Publisher or sponsor (if not available,

use N.p.). Date of Posting/Revision, (If not available, use

n.d.). Medium of Publication (Web). Day Month

Year that you accessed it. <URL (only necessary if it

will be hard to find your source without it.) >.

Example St Philip’s Academy: Where Excellence Begins. St Philip’s

Academy, Newark, New Jersey. n.d. Web. 20 Aug.

2009.

Example Cultural Heritage Initiatives for Community Outreach.

Harlem 1990-1940: an African American Community.

School of Information, University of Michigan.

2001. Web. 20 Aug. 2009.

Part of a Website Authors’ Surname, First name. “Title of Work.” Title of

Website. Version or Edition if available. Publisher or

Sponsor (if not available, use N.p.). Date of Publication (If

Not available, use n.d.). Medium of Publication (Web).

Day Month Year that you accessed it. <URL (only

necessary if it will be hard to find your source without

it.) >.

Example: Brito, Miguel. “A Letter From the Head of School.” St

Philip’s Academy: Where Excellence Begins. St. Philip’s

Academy, Newark, New Jersey. n.d. Web. 20 Aug.

2009.

Photo from a Website Photographer’s surname, First name. Title of photograph.

Original date of photograph. Title of collection. Title

of Website. Medium of Publication. (Web). Day

Month Year of Access.

Example Van Vechten, Carl. Zora Neal Hurston. 2 Apr.1938.

Portraits by Carl Van Vechten: Prints and Photographs

Div., Library of Congress: Library of Congress: American

Memory. Web. 20 Aug. 2009.

 

Video clip from a website “Title of episode.“ Narrator, director, performers. Title of

Series. Name of network if any. Broadcast date or

date posted. Title of Website. Medium of Publication

(Web). Date Month Year of Access.

 

Example “Three Cups of Tea’ Author Never Gave Up on His

Peacebuilding Efforts To Establish Girls Schools.” by

Alice Maggin. ABC News Person of the Week. ABC. 27

Mar. 2009. Greg Mortenson’s Blog. Web. 20 Aug

2009.

Speech from a Website Speaker’s name. “Title of speech”. Location. Date. Title of

Website or Database . Medium of publication (Web). Date

Month Year of Access.

Example King Jr., Martin Luther “I Have a Dream”. 28 Aug.

1963. Steps of the Lincoln Memorial, Washington

D.C. Internet Archive . Web. 20 Aug 2009.

 


Citing Other Sources

DVD Title. Director. Distributer, Year of release. Medium of

Publication.

Example Harlem Renaissance: the music & rhythms that started a

cultural revolution. Dir. Marino Amoroso, Kultur

Films International, 2003. DVD.

 

T.V or radio broadcast Title of episode or segment.“ Narrator or director. Title of

program or series. Name of Network. Local Station

call letters and city, Broadcast date. Medium of

Publication.

Example “More Help for Jersey’s Autistic Kids.“ Narr. Doug Doyle.

WBGO Journal. Newark Public Radio. WBGO, Newark.

14 Aug, 2009. Radio.

Song from a CD Composer, conductor , ensemble or performer. “Title of

song.” Artist(s) ( if different from first name. Title of

CD. Manufacturer. Year released. Medium of

publication (CD).

Example Pavarotti, Luciano. “Nessun Dorma!” The Three Tenors in

Concert 1994. Atlantic. 1994 CD.

Personal Interview Surname of person interviewed, First name. Personal

interview. Date.

Example Hooper, Thomas. Personal interview. 20 Aug. 2009.

For more details about how to cite sources look at the MLA Handbook in the SPA library or the MLA style guide at Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab at: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/ or ask your teacher or a librarian for help.


Example of a Works Cited list

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Dewey

Here is a fun way to test how well you know how to shelve books using the Dewey Decimal system. Click here to play Order in the Library from the University of Texas.