When you use someone else’s ideas or quotes in your own research, you must give the author credit through a footnote or an entry on your “works cited” page. This lends credibility to your work, allows your reader to locate the same source you used (as you do when using the bibliography in a book to find further information) and prevents plagiarism. Plagiarism is the use of another’s words or ideas as your own but without giving them proper credit. You must always provide documentation for any material that a reader might assume is your own creation. If you have any doubts, cite it.
The library has style manuals that provide the correct format for a citation in a footnote or bibliography. Your instructor may tell you which style manual to use. Two of the most widely used printed sources are listed below. Both provide standards for citing sources that will include the information a reader will need to locate the source you used and to give the author credit for the use of his work in your research. The link to the MLA Format is courtesy of Purdue University.
Chicago Manual of Style – Ref. Z253 U69 2003
MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers – Ref. LB2369 G53 2009
Documentation Guidelines – MLA Format
Need more help? Come by, call (336)770-1479 or contact the Reference Librarian.