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Research 101

Your starter kit for college-level research at Kennedy Library. Advance your research skills with the self-guided tutorials, handouts, videos and more!

Why is citing important?

Watch this video for a summary of citations in academic writing. By NCSU Libraries. CC BY NC SA 3.0.

Additional viewing options: Press "play" on the video and turn on closed captions with the "CC" button.

To avoid plagiarism you must give credit whenever you:

  • Use another person's words, ideas, opinions, or theories
  • Present facts, statistics, graphs, and drawings that are not common knowledge
  • Quote someone's written or spoken words
  • Paraphrase someone's written or spoken words

Whether your information sources comes from the Internet or from print materials, it is important that you record the information in your papers accurately and follow the citation style that is specified by your professor.

Popular Citation Styles

APA Style

Established by the American Psychological Association.  This style is standard for multiple disciplines including many in the Social Sciences.  The official APA style site provides robust citation examples and support.

MLA Style

Citation style established by the Modern Language Association.

Other Styles


CSE/CBE refers to the citation format established by the Council of Biology Editors. CBE is the format preferred by writers in Biology, Geology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Medicine, and Physics.