Students Guide on Citing Online Sources

Students today have so many sources to choose from to find the information they need. When conducting research, many students get tempted to use any source they find online. However, there is a system you should follow when backing up your point with sources.

To begin with, the source you’re citing should be relevant to your academic paper. Otherwise, including it loses your marks. Secondly, you should be in a position to cite the source correctly.

If you’re having a hard time citing online sources, you’re not alone. Even though the internet has unrestricted access, you should restrict yourself to reputable sources. If you don’t know how to cite a specific source, you’re better off not citing at all.

Citation is a significant cornerstone of the academic sphere. It does not matter if you sourced your information from a book or on the internet. Aside from knowing the procedure to follow, make sure that the source you cite adds value to your paper. There are sources that will take away from your academic paper because they’re not trusted.

Linking to an unreliable source is like basing your discussion on hearsay. For instance, you should avoid citing Wikipedia no matter how resourceful you think it is because it can be edited by anyone.

If you have a hard time citing your sources, consider letting a professional essay writer do your paper. Check out MyPaperDone for custom written papers. In the meantime, you can familiarize yourself with citation procedures.

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How to Avoid Plagiarism

Since you’ll be using internet sources to write your academic paper, you might find yourself unconsciously plagiarizing someone’s work. Even before you know the procedure for citing an online source, make sure you know how to avoid plagiarism.

If you want to understand how serious plagiarism is, imagine yourself as a self-publish author, finding out that there's someone out there claiming that they are the ones who authored your books? Annoying right? Plagiarism is frowned upon in the academic scene because it is a show of carelessness.

Ensure you're quoting and paraphrasing all the information you find on the internet. This is otherwise known as having an academic conversation. Providing credit to the original author not only shows respect, but it also assures your lecturers that you’ve done enough research.

When you cut and paste information from the internet, make sure you go through your work to ensure all the paragraphs have been paraphrases. Did you know that failure to offer citations is also considered plagiarism? Let’s dive into how you should cite online sources.

Citing Sources

Usually, the professor will specify what style you should use for your citations. For instance, if you’re writing in American Psychological Association (APA), your citation should follow the same writing style.

Check out Google Scholar for sources and how to reference them. Before you search for information, make sure you specify what you’re looking for; it could be case laws or ordinary articles.

Once you find the source, click on the quotation mark that appears below the title of the article to find different citation formats. Simply copy and paste this to your reference list. Using Google Scholar saves you the hassle of learning a specific way of citing online sources.


Now that you know the easiest way to cite online sources, you can never go wrong when giving authors credit.