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Citation Guides: Citation Overview

Citation Introduction

What is Citation and Why Do It?

  • Gives credit to the author of your sources 
  • Helps reader/audience find out more about your topic
  • Shows where to find particular sources which may include the author's name, date, publishing company location, journal title
  • Helps avoid plagiarism

What is Citation Style?

  • Determines the necessary information for a citation and how the information is arranged, as well as punctuation and other formatting
  • MLA (Modern Language Association) format is used for humanities and literature works
  • APA (American Psychological Association) is used for technical and scientific works


Please watch the following video, which discusses the definition, purpose, benefits, and basics of citation:

"Citation: A (Very) Brief Introduction" by NCSU Libraries is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 3.0


Plagiarism is the copying or close imitation of information from a published source

Plagiarism is not allowed at San Jose City College. If a student is caught plagiarizing, he or she could fail the class or even be expelled. To avoid plagiarism you must put quotation marks around information that is directly copied from a source and cite all thoughts, ideas, arguments, research, quotations and obscure facts taken from your sources using a recognized citation format like MLA or APA.



Use EasyBibBibMe or KnightCite to help build your MLA or APA citations

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