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Citing Sources

Tips on citing sources from the DI Library

About This Guide

This guide was created to provide students with instructions and examples for citing sources and links to read more. Navigate this guide using the topics on the left.

What Is a Source?

A source is anything that gives you an idea or piece of information to use in your paper or project.

  • A source can be a book, magazine, newspaper, letter, song, web page, blog, podcast, interview, email, Facebook update, or even your own class notes.
  • A source can also be something visual such as a TV program, movie, photograph, chart, diagram, or illustration.
  • A source can even be an artificial intelligence (AI) tool. If you use text generated by a tool like ChatGPT, Bard, or YouChat; an image generated by a tool like DALL-E, Stable Diffusion, or Craiyon; or music generated by a tool like Beatoven, cite that tool as your source.

Why Do I Need to Cite My Sources?

Citing your sources tells your audience where your information came from. This allows them to:

  • Go to your sources to learn more about the subject
  • Understand how you arrived at your theory, idea or conclusion
  • Know which ideas are your own original thoughts

Just as you wouldn’t want someone to steal your design for a chair, you need to give credit where it’s due when you use someone else’s ideas.


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