In-Text Citations: What Writers Should Know

Here’s a famous excerpt from a letter Sir Isaac Newton wrote to Robert Hooke in 1675, “If I have seen further, it’s by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” 

These words serve as a reminder that even the most accomplished of researchers depend upon their forebears. This is why it’s critical to give credit where credit is due. However, since Newton didn’t name those “giants” explicitly, his words ring hollow in some ways.

 

The issue of academic honesty, proper citations, and the potential pitfalls of plagiarism are well-documented. Over the course of this blog post, we’ll discuss why proper in-text citations are critical for avoiding a myriad of issues when writing academic papers.

In-Text Citation: What Is It?

In-text citations are references to other pieces that you have used as a source of information to write your paper. They’re usually used to refer to specific documents, such as clinical studies and textbooks, to either bolster the validity of your paper or to prove a point.

In-Text Citation: Why Is It Important?

In-text citations are important because they protect you from plagiarism claims and lend credibility to your work. All academic papers must contain in-text citations, or there would be no way to verify the resources that were used to craft them.

 

However, this isn’t the only purpose they serve. In-text citations should also be used for the following reasons:

  • To give credit to the individual, institute, or organization that is the original source of information.
  • To allow readers to verify the information that you’ve used.

What Information Should You Cite In Your Papers?

There’s a variety of information that requires in-text citations when writing an academic or research paper. They include:

  • Percentages and statistics
  • Facts that aren’t considered common knowledge
  • The direct quotes of another person
  • The ideas of another person

 

A good rule of thumb is to cite any information or idea that isn’t your own. As we mentioned above, when conducting research and writing a paper around it, it’s vital to give credit where it’s due. It’s also worth noting that ideas can be plagiarized as well, which is why direct quotes should be employed where needed.

 

Panther Academic Editing offers dissertation coaching services and dissertation editing services for college and Ph.D. students to make sure their dissertations are error-free, have good flow, and are compliant with their respective institute’s specific writing requirements. Get in touch with us today for more information.