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Citing Sources  

Last Updated: Mar 2, 2015 URL: http://pdc.vccs.libguides.com/cite Print Guide RSS Updates

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Why Should I Cite?

The primary reason to cite your sources is to avoid plagiarism and give proper credit to the original author or creator.  Other reasons for citing your sources:

  • Enables a reader to locate the sources you cited.
  • Demonstrates the accuracy and reliability of your information.
  • Shows the amount of research you’ve done.
  • Strengthens your work by lending outside support to your ideas.
 

What is Plagiarism?

Plagiarism is using another person’s ideas or words without clearly acknowledging or citing the source of that information.  You must give credit whenever you use:

  • Another person's idea, opinion, or theory.
  • Direct quotes from another person's actual spoken or written words.
  • Paraphrasing of another person's spoken or written words.
  • Any piece of information this is not common knowledge (e.g., fact, figure, statistic, chart)
  • Multimedia created by another person (e.g., photo, drawing, film clip, music, etc.)

For more information on plagiarism, and how to prevent it, see the Avoiding Plagiarism section of Guide to Research at JSRCC

 

Important Note

Always check with your instructor on what format specifications to use for a particular class or assignment, especially when citing electronic resources including material found in library databases.

 

Cite a Source: How and Why You Should Do It

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