Even though the majority of the essay need to write in writers’ word, sometimes it is essential to use some quotations from other sources. It is necessary to express the significant points based on the sources. As per the general rule, quotation needs to make up around 20 to 25 percent of the essay. Not just in essay, but also in other content, you need to add citations.

What do you mean by citation?

Whenever you write a research paper, you will have to mention all the sources. It is a process to increase your paper’s credibility by showing the proof. When you include sources or references in your paper, the readers can easily understand that content. So, always make sure that citations are good.

Understanding some best practices regarding citation

  1. Choosing the right sources

Before using quotes, you need to make sure that the source of citation meets the basic rules. Here you need to consider three factors. These are:

  • Authority:

The source that you have chosen for citation need to be authoritative. That means they support your claims with necessary facts.

  • Relevancy:

Always choose a relevant source. If you are using citation to show the credibility, by using an irrelevant source, you can stab yourself. When you choose the right source, you can provide the reader with the relevant content.

  • Non-compete:

You need to point your target reader to the competition accidentally. Don’t let them know that you are doing it purposely. Stay away from using any content which indicates certain products and services

  1. Properly linking to the citation sources

There is a concept that you should understand, i.e., Citation upfront. Citation is not about chasing the links. This is about adequately linking to a source which can support the claims through a case study, facts, or some other data.

  1. Linking to the author

Linking to the authors is the best way to increase credibility. But how to link the author while using citation? It is quite easy. You can reference the author by writing, “the author makes it clear that…” and then link the author name to his/her social media account.

Some other practices

You need to cite the sources in-text as well as at the end of the research paper. If you are using in-text citation style, the best method is mentioned the last name of the author and date of publication.

If you are using citations from the authors work, then don’t forget to explain all the aspects of the work clearly with your own words Directly give references to work.  The citation style can vary with one college to another. But no matter that is your citation style, you will have to follow the same method.

When should researchers use citation?

As per the research paper writing rules, the citations need to be used when researchers use someone else content and not his/her own. So, they can easily support their writing. The content may include:

  • Ideas or thoughts.
  • Words like phrases, quotes and more.
  • Visual as well as audio material.

Citation styles that one can use

In general, there are three essential citation styles that you can use in your research paper. These are:

  1. MLA- Modern Language Association.
  2. APA- American Psychological Association.
  3. Chicago which includes two different styles, i.e., Author date and notes or bibliography.

Based on your discipline or topic, you can choose the perfect citation style. Most of the instructor can assign you a particular style for a specific topic. But, when you move to higher classes, you can choose a citation style that will work with you. Check the below-mentioned details to know more.

  • For Humanities, for example, Art, English, Music, Language, etc. you can try MLA citation style. It uses an in-text citation, and you need to use this at the end of the research paper. The author name will come first, then title and information about the publication.
  • For subjects like Engineering, Education, Social Science, etc. you can use APA citation style. The style uses references list at the end of the work to properly link sources.
  • For the humanities or history, go for Chicago Notes and Bibliography citation style. It uses foot and endnotes to link the sources. In general, it accompanies by the bibliography page.
  • For subjects like social sciences, physical sciences and natural sciences, use Chicago Author Data citation style. The style uses an in-text citation, and you need to add works cited or references links at the end of the paper.

Remember that you will not be judged negatively for using citation even if it is not required in the paper. But skipping the citation can be treated as plagiarism, and it can put a negative effect on your paper. So, consider to use proper citation styles in your paper and use them correctly.