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Citations: Home


Citations are a big part of academic writing. As researchers, we use citations so that others can find our sources, either to confirm arguments or to get more information about a particular aspect of your paper. This is why writing correct citations is so important: you want your readers to be able to find out more about your sources!

Another reason to use citations is to avoid plagiarism. Plagiarism means using someone else's words or ideas without giving proper credit. This can be done by not citing a source you got information from, by taking credit for a quote from someone else by not putting it in your own words and attributing the idea, or by not putting it in quotation marks. 

Thankfully, there's an easy way to avoid plagiarism--citations! Read on for more information on how to write citations as well as resources to help you use them in your assignments.

If you have any questions about using citations or formatting your paper correctly, you can visit the library on the Lower Level of the Information Commons or email

Citation Guides

Citation Comparison Table

This chart, made by Purdue OWL , shows examples of how to cite different types of sources in multiple styles, and can be used as a quick reference. For more detailed explanations, please click the tabs above for each citation style.

Zotero Citation Manager

Zotero is a free program that helps you keep track of your sources, and generates citations for those sources. Zotero is free to download and use (up to 300 MB of space). To begin, create a Zotero account here, then download Zotero Standalone and the browser connector here

If you need assistance with this, open the directions below, or ask a librarian for help.

Hanging Indent

A hanging indent is a formatting standard used in many citation formats in the "Works Cited", "References", or otherwise dictated bibliographic section of a paper.

The hanging indent is an indentation in which all lines, except the first, are indented and "hang" above the rest of the paragraph. 


Hanging indents of .5" are required in APA-7, MLA-9, and Chicago-17.

See below for instructions in how to create hanging indents using popular word processors.

Google Docs

Highlight the citation/s you want to indent:

    -Along the top menu, click on Format, then go down to Align & indent, then click on Indentation options

    -In the Indentation options menu, under Special, select Hanging

    -Click Apply to implement.

Microsoft Word

Highlight the citation/s you want to indent:

    -Select Home tab, then Paragraph.

    -Select the Indents and Spacing tab.

    -Under Special, select Hanging.

    -Adjust the depth of the indent using the By field.

    -Select OK to apply changes.

Microsoft 365 (browser version of Microsoft Word)

Highlight the citation/s you want to indent:

    -On Home tab, go to end of ribbon and select the three dots icon.

    -Select Paragraph.

    -Under Indentation, select Special and Hanging.

    -Set indentation value using the By field. 

    -Select OK to apply changes.

Apple Pages

Highlight the citation/s you want to indent:

    -Open the format menu by clicking [format paintbrush] on the right hand menu. 

    -Click on Layout in the menu. Under indents, change first to 0.00 and left to 0.5.

    -This should automatically reformat the text into a hanging indent, or click the update button in the top right if it does not.


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