The citation is a reference that helps a reader to identify an actual source through which the writer provides important information. Generally, citations are mentioned in the text as well as at the end of the text, so that a reader can acknowledge the source and can also refer it for more information. A source can be a book, speech, website, film, newspaper, magazine, article, journal, etc. 

It is important for a writer to document all the sources of information, which he or she has used in an article, research paper or any other project or assignment. The main objective for documentation or citation is to acknowledge or praise the author or publisher for their original work. With the help of citations, a reader can locate the real source from where the information is taken and can also obtain more information on a topic. 

Citing a reference not only adds value of your written work, but also reduces the risk of plagiarism.  By mentioning the original source, you openly declare that you have used someone else idea to prove your point. A correct referencing is important when you are writing something informative as it will help a reader to access your source, which you have used as an evidence to validate your argument. 

Citation Definition 

The citation is defined as a short note recognizing a source of information. It can be mentioned in quotation, so as to give readers an idea about the source. In simple words, a passage or expression, which is cited or quoted, is known as a citation or in-text citation. Referencing a source at the end of a written work is called as end-text citation or reference list. 

The citation is different from bibliographies. A citation or a reference list mentions only sources that are cited in your text, whereas a bibliography uses similar referencing style and also incorporate all materials such as background reading. 
Use citation in following conditions: 
  • When you use someone else idea, which is already published. 
  • When you use a phrase in quotes. 
  • When you use paraphrase. 
  • When your sources work is vital in developing your own thoughts and idea. 
  • When you make a reference to the work of someone in your writing. 

What is a Citation?

A citation is a method of informing your readers that specific information in your piece of writing is taken from different source such as book, newspaper, novel, article, journal, website or movie. By writing a citation, you help your readers in identifying the source. When writing a citation, essential information should be given to readers, which includes:

What is a Citation? 

Why it important to cite sources? 

Citation helps a reader to figure out your ideas or thoughts from those of your sources. Besides, it helps in maintaining the originality of your work. There are various others to cite sources that are as follows: 
  • Citations are instrumental for anyone who wants to understand your topic or argument intensely.   
  • It is not important that every time only sources are accurate or good, your own thoughts and ideas may be accurate or more information, in comparison to your sources. 
  • By citing a source, you actually inform your readers about the amount of research you have done to prove your point. 

Citation Rules 

A citation should be written in a proper manner. The rules for citing sources are mentioned below: 
  • The ideas, facts or data, which are obtained from other sources, should be cited in an organized manner. 
  • If an author’s or publisher’s name is mentioned in the sentence, then the information or text should be presented within the inverted commas. If an author’s or publisher’s name is not used in the sentence, then the information or idea should be written in bracket along with inverted commas. 
  • If there are more than two authors then mention their names in the citation in a proper order. 
  • The citation should be mentioned at the end of the sentence. 
  • If most of the sentences contain information from the same source, then the source should be cited at the end of the last sentence. 
  • In some cases, a single sentence expresses an idea that is written by many authors. Hence, cite all authors’ name at the end of the sentence instead of mentioning a single author name.