How to cite references SOES 2007

How to cite references SOES 2007 - UNIVERSITY OF...

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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON School of Ocean and Earth Science HOW TO CITE REFERENCES The ability to cite references (i.e. to refer to literature utilised in the compilation of written work) correctly is an important part of every student’s stock-in-trade. However, it is firstly extremely important to state that you should only use appropriate material to support your work. Appropriate material includes books and journal articles (usually referred to as ‘papers’), official reports, etc., all of which are usually peer-reviewed by fellow academics and experts, thus assuring the veracity and quality of the information. This cannot be said of another class of information which you may well have employed in the past to help with your research, namely the internet. Anyone can publish a website, and very few of them are subject to the process of peer review. Thus the veracity and validity of the vast majority of information available through the medium of the World Wide Web is questionable. Therefore websites attributed to private individuals, such sites as Wikipedia, and even university course materials (e.g. lecture notes, Powerpoint presentations, Blackboard website information - even when provided by members of staff!) are entirely inappropriate sources of information to cite in formal degree-level work. There are exceptions to this rule, in that internet resources providing information from ‘official’ sources, such as those maintained by governmental, academic, national and international organisations may be cited in reference material. A general rule is that you should always return to the original, formal publication as your citation as support for a specific piece of information provided in a piece of written work (i.e. if you wish to cite the work of Author A, do not cite the work of Author B who reporting the findings of Author A in a later publication, seek out and read the original work by Author A – later authors have been known to misrepresent the work of earlier authors!). Correct citation should be a standard technique used automatically in the preparation and presentation of essays, seminar papers, dissertations, research project reports and theses. It is in the interests of both the writer and the readers of such pieces of work that references should be cited correctly, systematically and in full, so that they form a useful integral part of the work as a whole. It is perhaps worth beginning this text with a few definitions of terms which will be used during your studies and within this document (examples of which will appear later):
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Page 2 of 8 acknowledgement = the formal attribution, of an item of information used in academic documents, to the author(s) who originally produced the information, be it data, diagrams, discussion or interpretation.
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