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Citation FAQ

Frequently asked questions about APA, CSE, MLA, and Turabian citation styles

General formatting questions

When is a citation necessary?

  • Any time you:
    • paraphrase (or summarize) ideas and/or information from a source
    • quote (verbatim) from a source
    • use facts found in a source
    • introduce information that is not considered "common knowledge"
  • Additional information is available through Yale University's Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning

How should I indent resources in my works cited/bibliography/references?

All of the styles supported by B.D. Owens Library (APA, CSE, MLA, Turabian/Chicago) require a hanging indent for citations.
*highlight each citation and press Ctrl + T for easy hanging indent in MS Word

What is a DOI and when should I use it?

DOI stands for Digital Object Identifier, which is a series of letters and numbers that leads to an item's location. Articles in online journals are frequently assigned a DOI, which makes it easy to locate the article even if the URL changes. If an article includes a DOI, use that instead of the URL.

Should I include titles like Dr. or PhD to an author's name?

Do not include titles in any of the styles supported by B.D. Owens Library (APA, CSE, MLA, Turabian/Chicago).

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