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HCTC Library Orientation and Research Guide: Cite Your Sources

This guide is meant to help HCTC library users locate and use library resources and aid them in their research.


According to Merriam Webster Dictionary, CITE is defined as "to quote as an example, authority, or proof."

A CITATION in academic research is a specially formatted block of information referring to a source referenced in a research paper or assignment.

To correctly cite a source, first determine what the source is. Is the information source a:

  • magazine article
  • scholarly journal article
  • book chapter
  • YouTube video

The format of the source will determine HOW you cite it.

For example:

Modern Language Association (MLA Citations) 


Last Name, First Name. Title of Book. Publisher, Publication Date.


Author(s). "Title of Article." Title of Periodical, Day Month Year, pages.

Electronic Source:

Author(S). "Article Title." Journal Title, Vol., No., Publication Date, Page Range. Database, doi or URL


Author(s). Title. Publisher, Publication Date, URL.pdf.


American Psychological Association (APA Citations)


Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of work: Capital letter also for subtitle. Location: Publisher.


Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (Year). Title of article. Title of Periodical, volume number(issue number), pages.

Electronic Source:

Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Date of publication). Title of article. Title of Journal, volume number, page range. doi:0000000/000000000000 or


Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (Date of publication). Title of document. Retrieved from http://Web address


The article we found to begin our research assignment needs to be cited in MLA to be included in our Works Cited list.

In order to write the citation we need to gather data about the source such as:

  • Accessed online or in print
  • Author Name
  • Source Title
  • Publication Title
  • Publication Date
  • Publication Place
  • Publisher (If Available)
  • URL

Try It!


  1. You give credit to the original author of a source used in your research by citing them.
  2. The format of the source will determine HOW you cite it.
  3. Cite every source you use to avoid plagiarizing.

Avoiding Plagiarism

KCTCS Student Code of Conduct (updated effective January 1, 2017) relating to plagiarism:

Section 3: Standard 1- “Students shall adhere to the highest standards of academic honesty and integrity, and support a campus environment that is conducive to learning and scholarship. Violations or attempted violations may include, but are not limited to: Cheating, fabrication, plagiarism or facilitating academic dishonesty…”

Section 4, Part B-ii- “Incidents of academic dishonesty and misconduct which occur within the context of a specific course are resolved by the academic department in accordance with the College academic honesty policy. In such a case, the instructor or academic department determines whether academic dishonesty or misconduct occurred, and if so, the appropriate academic penalty. Lying, misrepresenting, or omitting relevant facts otherwise known at the time may subject students, faculty, or staff to disciplinary action, possibly up to and including dismissal or termination. Sanctions for academic dishonesty or misconduct may include but are not limited to:

  • Requiring the student to resubmit the assignment
  • A lower or failing grade on the assignment, exam, or in the course;
  • Removal from the course
  • Referral for other disciplinary actions a student who receives a penalty for academic dishonesty or misconduct may not avoid the academic penalty by withdrawing from the course.”

Web Resources for Citation Help