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Why citing is important
- To show your reader you've done proper research by listing sources you used to get your information
- To be a responsible scholar by giving credit to other researchers and acknowledging their ideas
- To avoid plagiarism by quoting words and ideas used by other authors
- To allow your reader to track down the sources you used by citing them accurately in your paper by way of footnotes, a bibliography or reference list
See the MIT Libraries guide to citing sources for more details.
For help in writing your paper, see the MIT Writing and Communication Center.
Citation software: Zotero with APA
Citation software helps you to:
- import citations from your favorite databases and websites.
- build and organize bibliographies.
- format citations for papers.
- take notes on articles and save them in your collection of citations.
- save and organize PDFs, screenshots, graphs, images, and other files for your research.
Which package to use?
Many citation software packages are available. We recommend you use Zotero, a free, open-source program that can be downloaded as a browser extension and as a standalone desktop program.
Which citation style to use?
Many citation standards exist. We recommend you use APA (American Psychological Association). Zotero will help you to format your reference in APA. For more information on the APA style, see:
Cite data in your paper/presentation so that you can:
- Give the data producer appropriate credit
- Enable readers of your work to access the data, for their own use and to replicate your results
- Fulfills some publisher requirements
Include in your citation:
- Year of publication
- Publisher or distributor
- URL, identifier, or other access location
Using citation software or style guides? In Endnote use the reference type for "dataset." If you're using Mendeley or Zotero, make due with using other more generic reference type templates and fill in the essentials for your dataset.
Cite data using Zotero
As Zotero lacks an "item type" for datasets, enter the citation in the system as a "Document," depending upon if/how the data producer provides a recommended citation; either:
- Export an RIS file and import this file into Zotero
- Copy and paste the information from a recommended citation into a new Zotero item with the type "Document"
- Otherwise, use the "Document" item type to add the components of the citation
Management and Social Sciences Librarian for Innovation & Entrepreneurship