29 Citing Information

One of the most serious academic offenses is plagiarism, which is using somebody else’s work without properly giving it credit by citing. Citing serves two purposes: helping the reader to locate the work you are referring to in case they want to read it; and acknowledging the work of another author, thereby giving them extra visibility, and helping their professional advancement.

The field of public relations and communication studies uses APA as the preferred citation style. The latest version of this style is APA 7. It is important to know the fundamentals of APA to properly cite the works you use in your papers and presentations.  As a rule of thumb, the work is cited first in the body of your paper when you first introduce it, and in following paragraphs if you continue referring to it. This is called in-text citation. You can use other authors’ work in two-ways: by paraphrasing or with the help of direct quotation.

When paraphrasing, try to summarize the other authors work in your head before putting it on paper in your own words. You need to indicate in the paragraph the name(s) (or names) of the author(s) and the year of the publication, if available. Two styles of in-text citation are shown in Figures 4.13 and 4.14

Figure 4.13 In-text citation example
Figure 4.14 Narrative in-text citation example

When quoting directly, enclose the whole quote in quotation marks and accompany it by the last name(s) of the author(s), the year if available, and the page or paragraph number where this exact quote can be found.

Figure 4.15 In-text citation for direct quotes

If the quote is larger than 40 words, you do not use the quotation marks, but instead format with hanging indent and double spaces, which looks different from the rest of your paper.

Figure 4.16 In-text citation for long quotes

All citations should then appear on the reference list at the end of your paper.

Figure 1.17 Entry in a Reference list

Different types of resources (articles, books, websites, videos, etc.) are cited differently. We encourage you to refer to your library’s APA Citation Style, where you can find many examples to which you could refer to make sure that your citations are formatted properly.


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