English 001 A (Worthington): According to who?

Disintegration/Reintegration (Daraja)

Why cite your sources?

When you write a research paper, you use information and facts from a variety of resources to support your own ideas or to help you develop new ones. Books, articles, videos, interviews, and Web sites are some examples of sources you might use.  Citing these sources of information in your work is essential because:

  • It gives credit to the author of the original work who provided you with the information or idea
  • It allows your audience to identify and find the source material in order to learn more about your topic
  • It gives your paper more credibility because it shows you're supporting your arguments with high-quality sources

Additional Help

IF IN DOUBT, don't hesitate to contact the LIBRARY (in-person, phone, email, or chat), we can quickly refer to online sources and/or the actual MLA or APA manual to confirm or verify any citation you are having trouble with. I'd also suggest bookmarking the following websites:

MLA Website

APA Website

Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Chabot MLA Handout

MLA Handbook, 7th Edition

You will be given a citation handout at a library orientation. However, you can access the online version here. Or you can come in and ask the reference librarian for a hard copy of the handbooks.

Tips for Citing Sources

It's important to make sure you collect all the information you need to cite a source as you gather your information so that you won’t need to look it up again, so:

  • Take clear, accurate notes about where you found specific ideas

  • Write down the complete citation information for each book, article, etc. you use as you go along

  • Use quotation marks when directly stating another person's words

  • Always credit original authors for their information and ideas

You Quote It, You Cite It!

You Quote It, You Cite It Icon

You Quote It, You Cite It! is Las Positas Library's adaptation of the Acadia University Library's tutorial on avoiding plagiarism.  Click here to take the tutorial.

Avoid Plagiarism

Definition: To plagiarize means to try to pass off another person’s words, work, information or ideas as our own, without giving them credit.


Intentional Plagiarism

Sometimes plagiarism is committed on purpose. For instance, a student turning in an entire paper that he or she didn’t write, or cutting and pasting huge pieces of information from an online source into a paper without acknowledging the original source of information. 


Unintentional Plagiarism

Unintentional plagiarism can occur when students aren’t aware of everything that must be cited. For instance, while most students know they must give credit for using someone's exact words, some are unaware they must also give credit for using someone’s ideas...even if they have put those ideas into their own words.   Unintentinal plagiarism can also occur when students don’t keep track of their source material, so that by the time they return to their notes they cannot distinguish between what information they came to on their own, and what information came from an outside source.