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English 142R Demonizing Others: Identity and Alterity in Later Medieval Literature

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Citation: A (Very) Brief Introduction

Start by watching this video...

When Should You Cite?

  • When you use the author’s exact words
  • When you summarize someone else’s words
  • When you read someone else's words and write it in your own words
  • Anything which is not your OWN original thought
  • Facts that are not common knowledge
  • When in doubt, CITE!

Caravello, P. Avoiding plagiarism: Strategies & resources. Presentation.
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. (2001). 5th ed. Washington, D.C.: APA, p. 348.

Why Should You Cite?

  • To add credibility and support for your ideas!
  • To ensure the accuracy of scientific and scholarly knowledge.
  • To protect intellectual property rights.

Caravello, P. Avoiding plagiarism: Strategies & resources. Presentation.
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. (2001). 5th ed. Washington, D.C.: APA, p. 348.

How Do I Cite?

You can cite your sources by quoting, summarizing, and/or paraphrasing. Remember: All instances require a citation!

Quote What? Using the Author’s exact words
How? Use “quotation marks” to mark someone else’s words
  • To support or add credibility to your arguments.
  • When the original is difficult to rephrase.
  • When original wording is great!
Summary What? Condensed/distilled version of the author’s words or ideas
Why? To include only main points of the original text
Tip: A summary is shorter than a paraphrase and covers main points only.
Paraphrase What?
  • Restating, in your own words, the author’s words or ideas


  • To simplify or clarify the original text
  • To demonstrate comprehension of original source

Paraphrasing Tips

  • Rewrite it using your own words
  • Rewrite it using your own sentence structure
  • Quote distinctive words or phrases taken from the original source
  • Accurately represent the author
  • Always cite the source of your information

Caravello, P. Avoiding plagiarism: Strategies & resources. Presentation.

Citation Styles

The moment you are asked to cite, take a look at your assignment to see if a specific citation style is indicated. This information must be known before you can properly cite your work. As with any citation system, using it correctly protects you from accusations of plagiarism. Common citation styles include MLA, APA, and Chicago Manual of Style. Use the tabs above to learn more.

MLA (Modern Language Association) style is widely used in the humanities, especially in writing on language and literature. It provides writers with a system for referencing their sources through parenthetical citation in their essays and Works Cited pages. If you are asked to use MLA format, you can access the online companion ( or consult the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (8th edition), which can be found in the UCLA Library catalog:

APA (American Psychological Association) style is most commonly used to cite sources within the social sciences. This resource, revised according to the 7th edition of the APA Manual, offers examples for the general format of APA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the reference page.

The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) covers a variety of topics from manuscript preparation and publication to grammar, usage, and documentation.

There are two main styles:

  • The Notes-Bibliography System (NB), which is used by those in literature, history, and the arts.
    • The Chicago NB system is most often used in history and is often used in the humanities and provides writers with a system for referencing their sources through footnote or endnote citation in their writing and through bibliography pages.
    • As with any citation stystem using it correctly protects the writer from accusations of plagiarism. As mentioned earlier in this guide proper citation builds credibility to the paper by demonstrating accountability to source material.
    • Sample Paper in Notes-Bibliography (from Purdue OWL)
  • The Author-Date System, which is preferred in the sciences.
    • In the Author-Date System each citation consists of two parts: the text citations, which provides brief identifying information within the text, and the reference list (list of sources used) which provides full bibliographic information.
    • Descriptions for Style Guides (APA). Russell, T., Angeli, E., Wagner, J., Lawrick, E., Moore, K., Anderson, M., Soderland, L., & Brizee, A. (2010, August 1, 2010). General format. Retrieved from
    • Sample Paper in Author-Date (from Purdue OWL)
  • If you are asked to use the CMS, be sure to consult the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition, which can be found online or in print via the UCLA Library catalog. The online resource provides a quick guide for both the notes-bibliography system and the author-date system.

Example: How to Read a Citation

How do you know which is a book, which is a book chapter or essay, and which is a journal article? There are many different citation formats and styles; but often, those who write for the social sciences use the American Psychological Association (APA) citation style. Here are some examples (Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 2010, 6th edition):


To find out which UCLA library owns this book, search the catalog under the author's name, title words, or keywords (a combination of author and title words). HINT: Leave out words like the, a, an, to, etc.

Chapter or Essay in a Book

A citation for a chapter or essay in a book includes many of the same elements as a book citation. However, the key to knowing that it is a book chapter is the word IN after the chapter title.

To find this essay search the catalog under the Editor's name (Inness) or under words from the book's title such as: kitchen culture America; or under keywords - (a combination of book Editor and book title words).

Journal Article

How do you find a journal article? Find out which UCLA library owns a subscription to that periodical. In the example above, you would search under Aztlan, and click on the "Search Journal Titles" button.