A citation is a reference to the source of an idea, information or image.
Any words, ideas or images that you do not create yourself must be cited if you use them in your work.
Citing information sources lets the audience know the origins of your information (in case they would like to locate the original) and gives credit to the creator (preventing plagiarism).
Use the citation style specified by your professor. MLA style is most commonly associated with humanities research. APA style is most commonly associated with social sciences and sciences research. CSE style is most commonly associated with the sciences and ACS with chemistry. Chicago style has two options for citing and is used for many subjects across disciplines. Legal citations vary.
Choose a blue tab above to select a citation style or topic for more information.
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You can also work with the Writing Center online. Connect with the Online Writing Lab for guidance and help with your writing assignments.
Need writing help? CCBC English professors are available to help you with any writing assignment at the CCBC Writing Centers by appointment.
Use the Purdue OWL website when the writing center is closed.
Citation builders help you format citations properly. They may be included in a database, usually as part of the print/save/email function, or in a "cite" button. Other citation builders are available freely on the internet. The citations are only as good as the information provided to the citation builders. Remember that you are responsible for the accuracy of your citations. Use the CCBC Citation Guides provided on this page of the Citation Basics research guide to correct the citations provided by citation builders.