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Citing Sources

Iona University Libraries Research Guide on Citing Source

Avoiding Plagiarism

  • Take notes with sources and page numbers when gathering information to remind you where you found the information.
  • Avoid citing other people’s analyses. Instead, develop your analysis and critical thinking.
  • When the course syllabus includes required texts, cite them using the preferred citation style for that class’s papers.
  • Class lectures should be cited if you are referring to a presentation.
  • Common knowledge does not need to be cited. 

Ethically, plagiarism is problematic because it lies about who did the work and devalues the original scholar's time and effort.

Academically, plagiarism can lead to serious trouble for students:

Plagiarizing by accident can still cause a problem, so avoid it! 

If you don't understand the rules for quotation and citation, you might plagiarize without realizing it.

  • Reviewing the appropriate citation style in this Citing Sources Research Guide can help guide you on the proper citation format. 
  • Contact your professor, a librarian, or a writing tutor if you're uncertain how to cite your sources correctly.
Cite in papers:

In the body of your paper, you indicate the source using in-text citation (which varies depending on the format).


You provide complete bibliographic information at the end of the paper

Note: Citation Styles differ by discipline. Always use the style your instructor indicates.

Cite in formal presentations:

You acknowledge, on your slide, where the graph, chart, or other information came from.

Plagiarism often happens when you lose track of your argument or do not fully understand what you are writing. You might use ideas and words that aren't your own when your reasoning and argument are not the results of your thinking. 

Citing can prevent plagiarizing, but over-citing can also be a problem.

If you cite and quote virtually all sentences in your paper, you haven't come up with your argument. You are simply giving a summary of the sources you've read.

Citing is used to support your argument; it is not intended to be the argument.

Take some time between research and writing and visit the Writing Workshop as you draft your paper.

Avoid Plagiarism in Research Papers with Paraphrasing and Quotations.

Credo Tutorial: Paraphrasing, Quoting, and Summarizing