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PLSC 3190: Law, Politics & Society

This guide supports PLSC 3190 (Professor Angelique Davis) for Fall 2016




RefWorks is an online research management, writing and collaboration tool designed to help researchers easily gather, manage, store and share all types of information, as well as generate citations and bibliographies.

Here's a research guide to help you get started with RefWorks.



What is a citation?

A citation identifies for the reader the source of the origin for an idea, information, or image that is referred to in a work. A basic citation includes the author, title and publication information for the source. Other elements are added to help the reader find the original work.

Example Book Citation
Barreca, R.  (1991) They Used to Call Me Snow White…But I Drifted: Women's Strategic Use of Humor. New York: Viking.

Example Article Citation
Kuska, B. (1998) “A Tale of Too Witty? Using Whimsy to Name Fringe Genes."
Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 89 (19): 1396-7

Why cite?

  • Give credit to your sources. Be fair to other authors. Ideas or information which you take from another author or source should be acknowledged through your citations.

Avoiding Plagiarism

  • Give yourself credit. When you cite your sources, you show evidence of your own research.
  • Give your reader the opportunity to build on your work. Readers may want to follow-up on some of your source material. A good citation will enable a reader to find this material more easily.

What do you need to cite?

In general:

  • Quoting. Are you quoting two or more consecutive words from a source? Then the original source should be cited and the words or phrase placed in quotes. Use quotes when you want to convey to the reader the language of the original text.
  • Paraphrasing. If an idea or information comes from another source, even if you put it in your own words, you still should credit the source. Be careful when you paraphrase to reflect your own writing style, not the original author.
  • General Knowledge vs. Unfamiliar Knowledge. You do not need to cite material which is accepted common knowledge. You would not have to cite the fact that Big Ben was in London, but you would have to cite little known facts about Big Ben, e.g. dimensions of the tower, who it was named after. If in doubt whether your information is common knowledge or not, cite it.
  • Formats. When we think of citing sources, we usually think of books and articles. However, if you use material from web sites, films, music, laboratory manuals, lecture notes, special application software, graphs, tables, etc… you will also need to cite these sources.

For more on when to cite:

How do you cite?

Different fields have different conventions for citing sources. In this class you will be using APA (American Psychological Association.)

For brief in-text references (see below for more detailed references):



  • Barreca (1991) states that “For women, humor occupies a different space emotionally than it does for men.
  • “For women, humor occupies a different space emotionally than it does for men” (Barreca, 1991).


Citing a Book and an Article in the References section.

APA. American Psychological Association.
Used in nursing, social sciences, education, psychology.

A citation style which uses parentheses in text (author-date) instead of footnotes or endnotes, this format is popular in those disciplines where the date of the work, its currency, is significant to the reading of the text. Sources are listed at the end of the text in a section called References.

Reference List


Kidner, J. (1972). The Kidner Report: a statistical look at bureaucracy at the

paper clip and stapler level. Washington, D.C.: Acropolis Books

Articles from a print journal
Heydt-Stevenson, J. (2000). "Slipping into the ha-ha”: bawdy humor and body
politics in Jane Austen’s novels. Nineteenth-Century Literature, 55 (3), 309-340.


How do you cite an internet source?

(Remember standards are still evolving)

Author. (Publication date). Title. Retrieval statement: complete URL

Avery, S., & Masciadrelli, J. (2003, April) Peep Research: A study of small fluffy
creatures and library usage. April 2003. Retrieved June 21, 2003 from

For more information:


How do you cite a source from a library database?


Author. (Publication date). Article title. Magazine title, [page numbers if available]. For journal articles, APA  now requires the use of  a unique number called a DOI. Some databases will have the DOI in the article record, some pdf's may also have the DOI. Go also to the journal website; you may find the DOI for the article there. If your searching results in no DOI, then include at end of the Article citation Retrieved from [source] database (name of database)

Example of journal article in database  with no DOI:
Banoff, S. I. (1994, June). Turkeys and chickens fear IRS audits. Journal of Taxation, p.380.Retrieved  from Proquest Research Library database.                                                                                                                                     (Use this format only if  a DOI is not available.  Check the database for the DOI, as well as the journal website).                                                                                                                                                       Example of journal article in database DOI found at  journal  website:  

Heydt-Stevenson, J.(2000). "Slipping into the ha-ha:" bawdy humor and body politics in Jane Austen's novels. Nineteenth Century Literature 55(3),314. doi:10.1525/incl.2000.55.3.01pol464 l.2000.55


For more information about citing in APA style see:

    • OWL at Purdue University: Using APA format
    • Cite Source - APA Style
    • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th Ed.) 2nd Floor-Reference Books  BF76.7 .P83 2010b
    • The library catalog and many databases including Proquest and Ebscohost have icons "cite this" on the tool bar of your results list. Use these tools as a guide, but always check the suggested format from these sources.


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    Rick Block
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