The ‘when’ and ‘how’ of citation

Students often get confused as to what all they should cite in their reports. Citations are necessary for such knowledge that is stated in the reference source. Hence, if a statement or data is originally found in the reference book or journal paper or website that you are using, you must provide sufficient and appropriate citation for the same.

However, you do not need to give citation in case you are writing statements that are common knowledge. There are many facts that are commonly known by all; for instance, the sun’s distance from earth or the number of states in a country. These things can be found in many reference books and do not need to be cited. Even here, do not use the exact words as given in the source.

Enquire about the exact format that your college follows for citation and use the same with precision. The style should be constant in the entire document, whether you are doing in text citation or in the reference list.

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