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ICS Capstone Seminar: Citing and Organizing Sources

Citing Sources

Style manuals are guides that tell you where/how to properly cite sources. Styles vary by discipline. The most common style manuals are:

For more information on APA, MLA, and Chicago Manual of Style conventions, check out the Purdue Online Writing Lab's guide to Research and Citation Resources.

Understanding Citations

Use this example to help you understand the citation elements of a journal article.

Image courtesy William H. Hannon Library (Loyola Marymount University)

Note (*) that journal titles are often abbreviated.  In most cases, you will need the full title to search for the journal in the online catalog or as an e-journal. Try:

  • Selecting a link for the "full citation" or "complete reference" in an online source
  • Selecting the link for a database's source list, and then looking for your journal title
  • Looking in the beginning of a print journal, book or periodical index, as there may be an abbreviations list
  • Looking in the book Periodical Title Abbreviations, available at the Perkins Reference Desk and Lilly Ready Reference
  • All That JAS: Journal Abbreviation Sources provides links for the natural and social sciences, law, and philosophy. 

Organizing References

Consider using citation management software to collect, organize, share and format citations. 


Endnote Citation Tool
Desktop client, over 5000 different styles, export from many library resources
Mendeley Citation Tool
Free, web-based tool, social networking functionality
RefWorks Citation Tool
Web-based tool, export from many library resources
Zotero Citation Tool
Free, web-based tool, save items via web browser

Check out this citation tool comparison chart. Or watch this 2-min tutorial, which will guide you through creating a free account with RefWorks. Or attend one of the scheduled workshops.

Avoiding Plagiarism

Image credit: Briana Patrick Public Relations

Tips on how to avoid plagiarism