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Citation Styles

Guide to creating citations correctly and avoiding plagiarism.

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Subject Guide

Guide Design and Licensing

This guide was redesigned by Britton Roseberry in Spring 2020. Original guide by Aline Soules.



Welcome to the Cal State East Bay's guide to citation and plagiarism!

Below are the pages on specific citation styles and some of the disciplines with which they are associated. Be sure to find out what citation style is appropriate for your coursework from your instructor.

Not sure if the source you are trying to cite is a book, journal, newspaper article, or something else?

Why Cite Sources?

Properly citing sources

  • Gives proper credit to the creators of the works you reference
  • Helps you avoid plagiarism and academic dishonesty
  • Establishes your credibility
  • Contributes to scholarly conversation by directing others to relevant resources

When to Cite Sources

Cite your source whenever you are

  • Making a direct quotation from the source
  • Presenting facts or statistics that are not common knowledge
  • Paraphrasing (using different words to restate information found in a source)
  • Summarizing (creating a shorter version of information found in a source)

Librarians are happy to help you with your citation questions.

Contact a librarian in-person at the library, or by phone, email, or chat.

Creating Citations

You don't have to create all of your citations from scratch. Zotero is a tool that helps you create citations from online sources and insert them into your reference list/works cited page.

More information about this software can be found on this guide's Zotero page.

You can also use the libraries' website to get a jump start on citations. The short video below shows how to use the citation tool built into the libraries' website to generate citations.

Always review auto-generated citations to make sure the citation is both accurate and complete.