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Documentation of Sources

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  • 1. Documentation of Sources
  • 2. Why do we document sources? To document a research paper or a thesis means to acknowledge, or cite, the sources used or consulted. Failure to do so constitutes plagiarism. Another pitfall associated with research is the violation of copyright laws .
  • 3. What is Plagiarism? Plagiarism is defined as the unacknowledged inclusion of someone else’ words, structure, ideas, data in his/her essay, report or thesis. In most universities plagiarism is considered academic misconduct and has a serious consequence.
  • 4. Today more than ever, it is easy to plagiarize. The Internet makes it possible to retrieve information from various sources, copy and paste, and come up with a paper that is completely taken from other sources. At the same time plagiarized information from sources on the Internet is easy to detect. It is possible to type a single word or phrase into a search engine and locate the original source.
  • 5. How to avoid plagiarism? 1. Acknowledge any sources that you use with proper documentation. 2. Put in quotation marks and document the source of all the exact words and phrases that you get from another source. 3. If you paraphrase, that is, put into your own words or rearrange the words, of another you must acknowledge the source. 4. It is not necessary to document facts considered common knowledge.
  • 6. There is no correct way to document sources . What is important that one has to be consistent. “ A scientist looked at 52 scientific journals and found 33 different styles for listing references . There is not a ‘right’ way and wrong but consistency is a must.” ( Guide to Scientific Writing p.15)
  • 7.
    • Where does the citation appear?
    • Citations appear in two places:
    • Within the text following the quotation, phrase, or sentence towards which the citation refers.
    • At the end of the page or chapter or thesis.
  • 8. Some Documentation Styles: 1. Footnote System. 2. American Sociological Association. (ASA) 3. Modern Language Association. (MLA) 4. American Psychological Association. (APA) 5. Numbered Note Systems {e.g. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Medical and Council of Science Editors (CSE)}
  • 9.
    • The Footnote system
    • With this system , you must employ superscript numerals within the text and place documentary footnotes on corresponding pages. or endnotes. Usually no list of works cited will be necessary just a bibliography.
    • Spacing: single space footnotes, but double-space between notes.
    • Indention: indent the first line five spaces, use raised superscript numeral with no space.
    • Numbering: Number the notes consecutively.
    • Placement: collect at the bottom of each page all footnotes.
    • Separation: separate between the footnote and text.
  • 10. Numbered Note Systems Some other sciences and applied sciences use numbered notes in the text of the paper, matching a numbered list of sources at the end in the sequence the sources were mentioned (not an alphabetical Bibliography, as in the Footnote system). Look at copies of journals in your field to see formatting details . END