Citing Your Sources
Lesson 6

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Citing Your Sources


By citing sources, you demonstrate your integrity and skill as a responsible participant in the conversation of scholarship.

New technologies have made it possible to locate, copy, paste, and save huge chunks of information with little reading, effort or originality.

Cutting and pasting from electronic sources has made it easy to intentionally or unintentionally misappropriate the ideas of others as one's own. McKenzie, Jamie. "Seven Antidotes to Prevent Highway Robbery in an Electronic Age." FNO From Now On: The Educational Technology Journal. 7(1998): 22 July, 2002 <>.

Representing the work of others as your own thought is dishonest and can result in dismissal from Spring Hill College. Plagiarism and copyright will be discussed more fully in Lesson 7 of the Tutorial.

Why Cite Your Sources?

Why should you acknowledge your sources, those other
voices in the conversation in which you participate as a scholar?

Here are four reasons:

1 Citations reflect the careful and thorough work you have put into locating and exploring your sources.

2 Citations are a courtesy to the reader, who may share your interest in a particular area of scholarship. They help readers understand the context of your argument, and locate your work within other conversations on your topic.

3 Citations allow you to acknowledge those authors who made possible particular aspects of your work. Failure to provide adequate citations constitutes plagiarism.

4 Citations, by delineating your intellectual debts, also draw attention to the originality and legitimacy of your own ideas.

Sources © 1998 Dartmouth College

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