Citing Document Sources-Part 1: In-Text Citations

A student writing. When using someone else's work, a citation must be given to indicate the source(s) used.
A citation is a note, found either in the body of the text, in a footnote at the bottom of a page, or in an endnote located at the end of the document section, or chapter that provides any or all of the following information:
  • who you quoted or who created the ideas that you are paraphrasing
  • the title of the book, article, or other source material
  • where the material may be found within that source (a page number, for example)
  • when the original source material was published

Each referencing method has its own requirements for what information must be included in an in-text citation. See the ISU Library's Citing Sources page for more details.

Citations acknowledge the ideas or works of other authors. Not including citations in your work is plagiarism.

Works that need citations include:

  • Someone else's idea, theory or opinion
  • Music drawings, designs, dance, photography and other artistic or technical works created by someone else
  • Reproductions of tables, graphs, photos or any kind of graphic element produced by someone else
  • Facts and information that are not generally known
  • An unusual or distinctive phrase, a specialized term, a computer code, or quantitative data
  • A paraphrase or summary of someone else's spoken or written words
  • Contributions of ideas by others with whom you have collaborated.

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