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Political Science

Citation help

What is a citation?

A citation, or reference, is the quoting, paraphrasing, or summarizing of someone else's work, used as a basis for your own ideas and research.

A citation also refers to the information about a source, such as title, author, date, etc., which gives credit to the original author and shows readers where to find the original work. There are two parts to a citation: the in-text citation, which goes next to the quoted material, and the reference list citation, found at the end of a paper or report. This list may also called a bibliography.

 GO TO CITATION HELP FROM UVIC LIBRARIES  to find out how to properly format citations by APA, MLA, or Chicago styles.

How can you keep your citations organized? REFWORKS

Citation Styles

There are a number of  citation styles and the Library holds print copies and quick guides at the Research Help desk.  Refworks can help with formatting your references / bibliography and your in-text citations.

For many POLI courses, the recommended styles are APA 6th or Chicago 16th Author-Date

Each of these styles requires a reference list of sources.  APA refers to this list as "References"  Chicago refers to it as "Bibliography".

Each of these styles requires the use of in-text citations for work quoted, paraphrased or summarized.  An in-text citation MUST include three elements:

  1. author surname
  2. year of publication
  3. page number(s) ,

In-text examples:

APA:  (Smith, 2000, p.987)

Chicago:  (Smith 2000, 987)

Reference list examples:  consult the quick guides at the links below for book, journal, newspaper, government documents, websites, and more.   Note that ebooks and ejournals require additional information such as a DOI,or a URL, and for Chicago, an access date. Note: Your professor may not require access dates , urls, or doi's.    

APA Ejournal example:

Kossinets, G. & Watts, D.J.  (2009). Origins of Homophily in an Evolving Social Network. American Journal of Sociology 115(2), 405–50. doi:10.1086/599247.

Chicago Ejournal example:

Kossinets, Gueorgi, and Duncan J. Watts. 2009. “Origins of Homophily in an Evolving Social Network.” American Journal of Sociology 115:405–50. Accessed February 28, 2010. doi:10.1086/599247.

Citation Style Guides

There are many citation styles and the library has many citation style guides both online and in print.

Citing American Government Documents 

Examples and rules to follow to cite US government documents properly and effectively.

Citing Canadian Government Documents 

Examples and rules to citing a variety of print and online government documents.

How to cite Statistics Canada products 

This guide has been developed for authors, editors, researchers, academics, students, librarians and data librarians. It describes, in three steps, how to build your reference when citing Statistics Canada products.

APA Style Guide to Electronic References  

Information on formatting electronic references in APA style; now included in APA 6th.