Citing correctly and consistently is a challenge. Why bother?
Whether you use a direct quotation in your paper or rephrase someone else's idea, you should cite works from which you have drawn inspiration. These may be texts, images, interviews or media. Keep a record of citations as you are working so you don't have to go back later and search for them.
Most databases have citation tools built into them that will help you cite things properly. However, you should ALWAYS double-check citations for accuracy. Here are a few of the most common issues with database citations.
Citations are only as good as the information in the database. Oftentimes, when article information is entered into a database, the name of the author appears in all caps. Then, when the databases makes a citation for you, it leaves the author(s) name(s) this way. No citation style uses all caps, so the author(s) name(s) must be fixed manually.
Depending on the method you use to copy and paste the citation, sometimes the italics used in the citation does not copy over. Make sure to add italics into your citation in the necessary places.
Special thanks to Ruth Szpunar, PALNI's Information Fluency Coordinator, for her work on this guide!