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Philosophy Resources: Citing your sources

What you need to know to do write philosophy papers and do research in philosophy at USD.


Citing your sources helps to avoid charges of plagerism.

For more on academic integrity, see USD website.

More Help with Citations

For more information about citation styles, check out the Citation Style Guidelines LibGuide.

Why Cite?

References tell your reader the ideas that influenced your thinking when writing the paper.  Since the paper is the product of your own creativity, if you borrow ideas from other writers but do not give them credit you are essentially stealing from them.  When quotes are used or when ideas are paraphrased, use in-text citations.  At the end of the paper, include a list of everything you read when doing the research for this paper, even if it was not quoted or referred to in-text.

The only exception to this is when ideas that are common knowledge are used.

To reduce the amount of characters that need to be typed in citing a resource or including a reference in your end-of-paper list, standard procedures, for citing your sources, called style guides, have been developed.  Different disciplines developed different style guides.  Use the style guide dictated by your instructor.

If you are starting a large project such as an honor's thesis, consider using citation management software.  EndNote is available free to all in the USD community.   if you have questions about downloading or using EndNote refer to the EndNote LibGuide or contact the Philosophy Liaison (see right panel).

Getting help

Need help finding philosophy sources?

Contact the Philosophy Liaison, Kathleen McElhinney at or 605-658-3370.

Need Help with Writing?

Contact the Writing Center.

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