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Assignment | Proposal Essay with Research (Vasconcelos): Citing Info in-Text

ENGL 1301 | Prof. M. Vasconcelos (Fall 2022)

From the Assignment

Be careful not to "over-cite" your sources. Seventy-five percent of your essay should be your own words and ideas. Only 25% (at the most) should be information cited from your sources.

Do not use block quotes, which are four lines or longer. Cite three lines, or less, at a time. Use the ellipsis (. . .) to let the reader know that some material has been omitted.

Using Ideas & Words

There are two components to any source of information you use: the ideas and the words.

There are two ways of using information in your work: direct quotes and paraphrasing. (We'll call summarization a kind of large-scale paraphrase. The big idea of a book or article may be summarized, while a sentence or two at a time may be paraphrased. Same principle applies to both, however.)

Direct Quotes = Borrowed Words + Ideas

Ideas and Words (light bulb and speech bubble graphic)

Paraphrasing = Borrowed Ideas

Ideas (light bulb graphic)

In-Text vs Works Cited Citations

Every time you refer to information that is not your original conclusion and is not common knowledge, you must give credit to where that information comes from. (Whether it's quoted OR paraphrased!)

You will typically note in parentheses the author's/authors' names and relevant page number, if available.


Connecting the in-text citation with your works cited page: author's name in-text connects with the first author listed on the works cited

No-Author Sources

When there's no author, your citation starts with the article title, and your in-text citation will use that.

It's all about making it easy for your reader to make a one-to-one connection by just skimming down the left edge of the Works Cited page.

Example of in-text vs Works Cited, when there's no author: the first few words of the article title form the connection instead of an author's name

Knowledge Check: MLA In-Text Citations