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Wildlife Ecology and Conservation

What is a Citation? 

Citations are used to acknowledge the sources of information you are using. They give credit where credit is due. In addition to avoiding plagiarism and demonstrating how your writing builds upon previous work, citations help you meaningfully engage in academic discourse. They also help enhance the credibility of your writing.

Source: A (Very) Brief Introduction. This video provides a short introduction to how and when to use citations. Created by NCSU Libraries under a Creative Commons 3.0 BY-NC-SA US license via YouTube.


 Describe books, journal articles, websites, or other published items 

 Give credit to the originator of an idea, thus preventing plagiarism 

 Enable the reader to retrieve the item you refer to 

 Include the author, title, date, source, and DOI if available 

Why should you cite your sources?

 To avoid plagiarism and its serious professional repercussions (example 1; example 2)

 Be an ethical writer

 Give credit to your sources

 Make your sources easier for others to find

Scholarly Articles Are Not Created in a Vacuum


Anatomy of a Citation

Citation Management Software

Citation management software allows you to collect, organize, share, and format citations. Most of these tools offer the ability to add citations to Microsoft Word documents. The Libraries support several options as shown below.


Additional Details


Citation Management Workshops

The Libraries offer hands-on workshops in person and online to get you started with a citation management software. Click here to see the schedule and register.

Other Useful Citation Tools 

 APA Style Website  

 Scientific Style & Format: the CSE Manual for Authors, Editors, and publishers   

 Purdue OWL (Purdue’s Online Writing Lab)

Just need to create a quick citation or bibliography? Try ZoteroBib.

 In addition to ZoteroBib, there are many citation generators online (e.g., Citation Machine) that will format individual references. Many literature discovery tools offer citation generators too!  

Zoterobib Video Demo

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