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Getting Started with Library Research: An Overview of the Process

A research guide to support your journey through the library research process. Contact a librarian for assistance!

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Writing Support on Campus

Two people sitting at a computer looking together at the same screen

Photo Credit: UO Libraries

Note: Please check the websites below for availability of online or remote services:


Tutorials

Help with writing & editing your paper

Citation Management Tools

Citation managers help you collect, organize, cite, and share research. Click on the links below for guidance on using these tools.

Learning Opportunities

For help learning these tools, contact an expert listed on the tool's guide or sign up for one of our workshops:

Citation Management Workshops at UO Libraries

Noun Project Workshop iconUO Libraries offers Citation Management Workshops

Check for scheduled Citation Management Workshops at UO Libraries and sign up at the link below:

 

Read about all UO Libraries workshops:

If you prefer a one-on-one or small group consultation, contact a local expert on the Help pages of the citation management guide.

Green pencil icon from Noun ProjectOrganizing your research can help make the writing and citing process easier. Use tips from this page to guide you in this step.

Why do we cite? Several reasons! 
  1. It makes us look good. Seriously, it's the ethical and responsible thing to do when using ideas or quotations from others.
  2. It helps us point our readers to our sources where they can more deeply engage with the scholarly conversation.
  3. It helps us to learn how to communicate formally within our discipline/major.

Avoiding Plagiarism: What Do I Need to Cite? (Video Tutorial)

Check out this video from Kevin deLaplante to learn about plagiarism and borrowing both quotes and ideas (paraphrasing).

Organizing Your Research - Avoiding Plagiarism (Infographic)

Major Citation Styles - Official and Credible Guidance

Official Style Manuals

There are many different types of academic and professional writing styles. The four guidebooks below represent some of the major ones. Use these guides to learn how professional researchers and writers prepare their manuscripts for publication or sharing.

Major Style Guides by Fields that Use Them -- Click the image to be taken to the book or eBook in our library collection.

Humanities

Social Sciences Humanities & Social Sciences Some Sciences

MLA Handbook, 9th edition, book cover image

MLA Handbook

Cover Art

APA Manual

Cover Art

Chicago Manual

Cover Art

CSE Manual

Online Style Resources

Although these resources are not official, they are still credible and very useful! If one of these websites doesn't answer your question, check out the official style guide or contact a librarian for help!

UO Research Guides

These helpful guided from UO Libraries provide information on various citation styles.

Citing and Attributing Images in Presentations, etc.

A photo of someone holding a sign that says "Give Thanks".

Photo by Simon Maage on Unsplash

Attribution statements give credit to the original creator(s) whenever you reuse or re-purpose their content. If someone reused your creative works would you want them to give you attribution?

What's the standard we use to give attribution?
As recommended by Creative Commons, this is an ideal attribution:

Cupcakes on a glass platter on a green table

“Creative Commons 10th Birthday Celebration San Francisco” by tvol is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Because:
  1. What is the title? “Creative Commons 10th Birthday Celebration San Francisco”
  2. Who is the creator/author? “tvol” – linked to their profile page
  3. What's the source? “Creative Commons 10th Birthday Celebration San Francisco” – linked to original Flickr page
  4. What license is used?? “CC BY 2.0” – linked to license deed

Citations vs. Attribution

The following table summarizes the differences between citations and attributions.

What's the difference between attribution and a citation?

Citation

Attribution

Academic and legal purposes (plagiarism and copyright infringement).

Legal purposes (e.g., rules of Creative Commons licenses).

The rights of the copy (meaning copyright) are NOT shared with the general public by the copyright holder.

Copyright IS shared with the general public by the copyright holder by marking the work with an open-copyright license.

Protects an author who wants to refer to a restricted work by another author.

Author of an open work has given advanced permissions to use their work.

Used to quote or paraphrase a limited portion of a restricted work.

Used to quote (or paraphrase) all or a portion of an openly licensed work.

Can paraphrase, but cannot change work without permission.

Author has give advanced permission to change work.

Many citation styles are available: APA, Chicago, MLA.

Attribution statement styles are still emerging, but there are some defined best practices.

A reference list of cited resources are typically placed at the end of the book.

Attribution statements are found on the same page as the resource.

Locating a Permalink for your Citations

Some citation styles require or suggest you include a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) or web address in your bibliography. If you copy the URL from your browser bar, it may not work for other people, especially if your information source is in a library database. Instead, it is preferable to use the a permanent link or "permalink" in your citation so that others can find the resource, even if they are off campus or attend a different university. 

Library Subscription Databases
  • In EBSCO databases, look for the Permalink option under Tools in the right sidebar. Once you click on it, a new bar will appear in the middle of your screen with a link that you can copy and paste.

Screenshot of Ebsco Permalink

  • In ProQuest databases, click the Abstract/Details tab and look for the Document URL.

Screen shot of ProQuest permalink called 'Document URL'

LibrarySearch

The library's catalog and search tool has a Permalink feature:

Link to this Item in Library Search with Permalink option

Government Publications

Government websites and documents often have a permalink called a pURL (Pronounced like "pearl"). PURLs provide stable URLs to online Federal information.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

A DOI is an alternative to a permalink. Your citation style may call for you to include just the DOI name (E.g: DOI: 10.5555/12345678), or the DOI URL (E.g.: "the full DOI" or https://doi.org/10.5555/12345678).

Learn more about persistent links for library resources.

Pause to Reflect

Process icon from Noun ProjectFirst of all, congratulations on making it this far! You may still have some loose ends to tie up, and that is OK. Take a moment to think back through your research process. Did you learn any helpful tips along the way? Are there new strategies that you can use for future projects or papers?

Do you still need more information? You can go back to previous steps at any time to revisit your research question or look for more or different sources of information.

If you think you missed something, please feel free to reach out to a Subject Librarian:

University of Oregon Libraries
1501 Kincaid Street Eugene, OR
97403-1299
T: (541) 346-3053
F: (541) 346-3485
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