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History: Research Paper Basics 2024: Citing and Using Sources

This guide is designed to help history students successfully complete their next research paper assignment

Citing your sources properly is a very important part of the research process and on this page you will find resources to help you cite your research paper correctly.

Citing your sources accurately is necessary for three primary reasons:

1. Citations help you avoid plagiarism. Plagiarism is an ethical standard based on community practice. USD considers plagiarism a serious violation of academic honesty and it can result in serious punishment such as failing a class or being expelled from school.

2. Citations lend creditability to your work by providing evidence to support your argument and by demonstrating that you have considered a variety of perspectives; including those of experts in your field.

3. Citations are a standard way for responsible scholars to help maintain the scholarly record by giving credit to the work and ideas of others and by allowing readers to locate the sources referenced by way of footnotes or a bibliography.

Take Copley's Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial

Citation Management Tools

Most Copley Library databases offer tools to generate citations for the resources you find. Below is a select list of citation tools you can find on the web to generate and manage citations.‚Äč

Chicago Manual of Style Online

USD Writing Center

For more on this topic see Copley's Library Guide on Paper Mechanics and Citing Sources.