Citing Your Sources
Really, the hardest part of doing research is finding the best sources and completing your paper or assignment using those sources. Citing them should be the easy part. But students tend to get pretty stressed out when it comes to citations. No worries, though, we can help.
First, why is it important to cite? There are really 2 main reasons:
1) Readers of your paper or research should be able to find where you got your information, even if your information came from online videos, podcasts, or social media. If you use or refer to images, sound, or music, your readers should be able to find those sources. By citing your sources, you give your readers a chance to utilize those same resources out of interest, or even to check your facts.
All citation styles, e.g. MLA and APA, try to include all the information needed for someone to track down that source.
2) You need to give credit to the creators/authors of the information you use. This is key to academic integrity and avoiding plagiarism.
For information on formatting, in-text citations, and reference lists, take a look at the style guides below:
You can also see the following sites for more help:
- Purdue OWL MLA Formatting and Style Guide
- Purdue OWL APA Formatting and Style Guide
- FAQs about the MLA Style Manual
- APA Style Blog
Upcoming Citation Webinars (THIS WEEK!):
Go to the ELI Webinars schedule to sign up for the following citation webinars:
Citation Basics–APA Style
Make sure you’re citing your work correctly! This 30 minute webinar will go through the basics of the APA citation style. We will cover general formatting, in-text citations, and the reference list.
Tuesday, March 18, Noon – 12:30 pm
Thursday, March 20, 6:00 – 6:30 pm
Citation Basics–MLA Style
Make sure you’re citing your work correctly! This 30 minute webinar will go through the basics of the MLA citation style. We will cover general formatting, in-text citations, and the reference list.
Monday, March 17, 6:00 – 6:30 pm
Thursday, March 20, Noon – 12:30 pm
Have you signed up for our ELI March Madness Bracket Competition? The tournament begins March 20th!
Join our Tourney Pick’ em through Yahoo.
Bracket group name: ELI March Madness Competition password eli1234.
If this group is full, check out our second or third groups:
ELI March Madness 2
ELI March Madness 3
Join our private group here!
A couple of weeks ago, we talked about using Google for your research. Of course, NOVA Libraries has access to thousands of newspaper, magazine, and journal articles through the library databases. But that doesn’t mean that there’s not good and useful information out on the web as well. You just need to be critical.
So how can you decide if a website has good information that would be appropriate to use in your assignments? You’ve heard of the 5 W’s, right? Well, they can also be applied to evaluating information, on the web and elsewhere.
WHO – Who wrote or published the information? Is it someone you have heard of? Is it an organization that you are familiar with?
WHAT – What are the author’s credentials? Are they clear about their experience in the subject and how they relates to the topic they are writing on?
WHEN – When was the information published? Is it the type of information that changes over time (Think: Medical Information)? Or is it the type of information that stays the same (Think: History)?
WHERE – Where did the author get their information? Are they properly citing their sources? Are they clear on where their facts, statistics, graphs, etc. are coming from?
WHY – Why are they publishing this information? What is the author’s motivation? Are they showing a bias?
Take a look at the NOVA Libraries’ 5 W’s to Determine Good Information for more tips! And as always, if you’re not sure about a website, ask us! ELI-Library@nvcc.edu
March 8-9 & 15-16, 2014
Take a look at the website here.
“Take a step back in time to Highland County, “Virginia’s Switzerland.” Travel back roads and mountain byways to the annual Highland Maple Festival. Held on the 2nd and 3rd weekends of March, the Maple Festival has been an annual event in Highland County, Virginia, since 1958.
Each year, thousands of visitors are drawn to this unspoiled, rural region of Virginia to celebrate the ‘opening’ of the trees and observe the process of maple syrup-making. Sugar camp tours provide a unique and educational experience that portrays a rapidly vanishing way of American life.”
1. Sign up for online banking/automatic bill payment.
Not only will signing up for automatic bill payments decrease the clutter level at home by eliminating paper billing statements, you will also save on postage, and eliminate late charges that come about by missing the due date. Be good to the environment, your pocketbook, and free your brain up for more enjoyable memories!
Finding Articles in Library Databases
Did you know that NOVA Libraries gives you access to thousands of journal, newspaper, and magazine articles that are housed in over 100 databases? The good news is it’s pretty likely that we have information on the subject you are researching. The bad news? I could be a little overwhelming.
This short 5 minute video will introduce you to library databases and give you some search tips.
And, as always, if you need help finding information or using any library resources, we’re here to help. E-mail your ELI Library staff at ELI-Library@nvcc.edu.