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Citing: frequently asked questions

1. When do I need a citation?
When you take information from a source that is not your own idea, analysis, or experience.

2. What do you include in a citation?
Author’s surname and year of publication. Page numbers for direct quotations. Also see: Citing APA style

3. Is there a difference between citing a paraphrase and citing a direct quotation?
Yes, add page numbers for direct quotations. A paraphrase only needs to include the author and date.

Also see: Paraphrasing and summarising

4. What does “et al.” mean and when do I use it?
“et al.” means ‘and others’. It is used when there are three or more authors for second and subsequent citations. The first citation should name all of the authors.
Also see: Citing APA style

5. If I paraphrase and include a complete reference list at the end, do I have to cite in the text?
Yes. In-text citations are needed to show where your evidence has come from. This is an expectation of academic integrity.

6. Do I cite more than one source for the same point?
List all sources separated by a semi-colon: e.g. There are many ways to measure how students study and which methods are more effective (Chang, Firth, & Shane, 2010; Moody, Derick, & Matheson, 2012; Matthews, Swales, & Brand, 2014).
Also see: Citing APA style

7. How do I cite an article that I read about in another article or book?
Make an effort to find the original source, but if you cannot access the original, cite it from the book you have found it in: e.g. Brown & Garth (as cited in Granger & Charm, 2016) found that a business…

8. What if I have two articles by the same author in the same year?
You distinguish between the two references from the same year by assigning letters to each: e.g. Evidence shows that drinking coffee is good for you (Granger, 2016a, 2016b).  Use this notation in the reference list too.