Citations and Style Guides

It's important to give credit whenever you quote somebody, borrow a concept or idea, or use somebody's research findings or other types of work — including charts, diagrams, photographs, etc.

Citing sources helps you:

  • Show that your work is based on credible research.
  • Avoid accusations of plagiarism or "stealing" ideas.
  • Give credit to authors and creators.
  • Help readers look up your sources to use or verify.

Using proper citation style is usually a requirement for any written assignments and publications. Keeping track of your sources using the appropriate style will help save time and effort looking things up again later.

Style guides also include rules for formatting your text, including title pages and bibliographies. Ask your instructor or a librarian if you're not sure which style to use.