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This page covers information relating to citing and citation styles. Additional information is provided for some of the more tricky resources.

Citing your sources are required with writing assignments and often in presentations.Check our guide below to see why citing helps avoid plagiarism, while making sure to give credit to the authors/producers of the information.

If you're not sure which citation format to use, please check with your instructor. The usual styles in the Health Sciences are APA and AMA. APA: from the American Psychological Association.

Citing overview

Since you will read articles and other publications that use a variety of citation styles, it can be confusing at times. Remember, once you know which style you need to use, stick to that format for consistency.

The tutorial offers more detail and practice.

Citation organization/management

By now you have probably heard of citation management programs, sometimes called reference managers. The most common ones are EndNote, Zotero, and Mendeley but there are others. There are also tools that will format one citation at a time but don't store and organize like these others do.

Your instructor or group member may have a preference for one. These tools will save you time and help with formatting for both in text (in your paper) and creating bibliographies/reference lists.

Adding citations to a citation/reference manager

  • When in a database and saving articles, look for a button or text that indicates "save",  "export" or "download" your citations. In some cases it may use words like save to "Citation Manager."
    • occasionally the name of your program, like EndNote, may be an option
  • While sorting through your results and selecting articles, save them to a folder or file (whatever the database calls them, clipboard in PubMed). This will have your selections to them save in a file to import into your reference manager program.

Already have a pdf saved on your computer? Many will allow you to drag and drop it in the program. It will read the citation components and add them appropriately. Otherwise, you can import it, follow the instructions to upload a file.

Other reasons to use Zotero, EndNote or Mendeley

  • You can manually add citations, maybe a pamphlet or a book that is just easier this way.
  • Select citations to create a bibliography and have it formatted automatically in the style of your choice.
  • Enter in-text citations as you type your paper using the Word addon/plugin provided by the program.
    • Note: You have to either download or connect this to your word program first. 
  • Share your citations and bibliographies easily with the share options.