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Attributing our Sources
Transcript of Attributing our Sources
a direct quote
We must do this if we use
insight or data -- If you are studying a topic and you use a source to help you understand your topic, and you share that understanding in your writing, you must mention the source too.
Flintstone, Fred. Flinstone Journals. Boulder: Granite Press, 1985. Stone Carving.
Lastname, Firstname. Title of Book. Place of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Medium of Publication.
Rossenwasser, David and Jill Stephen. Writing Analytically 4th ed. Boston: Thomson Wadsworth, 2006. Print.
The next time you refer to this writer, you can just use the last name.
When we use ideas or information from other people or organizations in our writing, we must give them credit by sharing their name and other information in our writing. This is called attributing our source.
Whether you are working with direct quotes or paraphrases or summaries, acknowledge each author’s name explicitly in your text. The first time you refer to an author, use his or her full name and provide his or her credentials in your signal phrase.
Please note that the period goes after the closing parenthesis.
You may resist this, but I urge you to trust me on this. I’ve written some really long papers and this is the voice of experience speaking.
Even if you don’t sort out the whole Bibliographic entry, figure out what the leading word will be right away, and then -- even in your drafts -- use this from the get go. This will save you from some very tiresome editing at the end.
Usually the leading word is the author’s or editor’s last name. In the examples we have looked at Flintstone is the leading word.
Everytime you use the words or ideas of someone else, you must include three things:
1. Signal phrase
2. in-text Citation
3. Works Cited
A signal phrase announces to your reader that you are about to paraphrase, summarize, or quote some other person or set of ideas.
Use either a comma or the word 'that' after a signal verb.
Fred Flintstone comments, “Bedrock is the best place to live in the whole world”.
Fred Flintstone claims that Bedrock is a great place to live.
In-text-citations are the first signpost on the path you are making for your reader. If your reader wants to know more about your claim or your quote, citations allow your reader to find the original source.
The works cited are the end of the path you made so that your reader can access your source. The in-text citation should lead directly to the correct entry in the Works Cited List.
David Rossenwasser and Jill Stephen, writing text-book authors and English professors, remind us to "[a]lways attach quotations to some of your own language; don’t let them sit in your text as independent sentences with quotation marks around them" (Rossenwasser and Stephen 41).
Did you wonder about the use of square brackets? We use those to indicate a small change from the original. In this case, I changed their capital A into a lower-case a.
Rosenwasser and Stephen try to teach us that "[t]o analyze something is to ask what that something means. It asks how something does what it does or why it is as it is. Analysis is a form of detective work that begins not with the views you already have, but with something you are seeking to understand" (41).
The in-text citation starts with a opening parenthesis, the the author's last name only, then the page number only, then a closing paranthesis and then the period.
My Excellent Essay
Blah blah blah blah blahbitpty blah blah blah. Fred Flintstone comments, “Bedrock is the best place to live in the whole world” (Flintstone 7). Blah blah blah blah.
This indicates that if I look in the Works Cited list under 'F' I will find an entry for Flintstone. There I can learn his whole name, the name of the book, the publisher etc. -- all the info I need to go find the book. When I find the book, I should be able to turn to page 7 and find the exact words quoted.
There is a huge list of rules for the format of this page. This is a tiny summary.
Other than trying to remember the rules for the leading word (so that I can insert my in-text citations correctly from the get-go) I do not try to memorize the rules. My brain is too full for that sort of detail. I just look the rules up when I need them. I usually google “OWL Purdue MLA” and find everything I need.
The very cool Flash program, Prezi, that I use to make this presentation does not allow for hanging indents or italics. But you do need to use hanging indents for your Works Cited. Look in the FAQ for instructions on how to do this. Also, the book titles should be in italics.
hanging indent & italics
The Works Cited or Bibliography needs to be alphabetized. If you are working with a long list of sources, keeping it in alphabetical order helps your reader navigate quickly.
copyright Suzanne Chandler, M.Ed. 2011 Do not distribute without permission. Thanks.
Attributing Our Sources