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**Research and Writing**

Welcome! This guide will help you develop your research and writing skills by providing foundational knowledge of the iterative research and writing process as well as manageable steps for breaking down and navigating college research projects.

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Still Struggling?

Conversing with someone else about your research and writing process can be incredibly helpful.  Contact someone at McKillop Library or the Writing Center using the links below.

Citation Styles

Staying current in a discipline requires a lot of reading and research.  For professionals and students, having materials in the same "language" or format within a discipline helps to better understand, analyze, and apply material content.  Over the years, most academic disciplines have selected a preferred citation style for writings.

The three most popular citation styles at Salve Regina University are APA, Chicago, and MLA. 

MLA

  • Created in 1883 by an advocacy group for the study of literature and modern languages and overseen by the Modern Language Association
  • Usually used for the following disciplines: literature and language

Chicago Manual of Style

  • Created in 1906 as a manual of style for the University of Chicago Press and overseen by the University of Chicago Press editors
  • Usually used for the following disciplines: history and arts
  • Unique from other citation styles in that it has two different formats: note and bibliography style (most common) and the author-date system

APA

  • Created in 1929 by a group of psychologists, anthropologists, and business managers and overseen by the American Psychological Association
  • Usually used for the following disciplines: psychology, business, nursing, business, and education
  • Learn more about this citation style here

Why Cite?

In addition to your original thoughts and insights, completing a research project requires combining data from a variety of sources and carefully documenting the sources of the information and ideas that you have gathered.  This documentation usually involves two major parts: in-text references that occur throughout the actual paper as well as a complete list of works at the end of the paper that may be called a bibliography, a reference list, or a works cited page (depending on which citation style you are working with).

In addition to giving credit to the source of information or ideas, there are other reasons to cite sources in your research project:

  • Persuasiveness: Your writing is more persuasive if you cite the quality information that is at the base of your arguments and conclusions.
  • Sharing: Citations enable your readers to examine sources you found interesting and to continue their own research on your topic.
  • Communication: Correct citations help you communicate effectively with others in a specific discipline.
  • Skills: Incorporating correct citations demonstrates your research and writing skills to your audience.
  • Avoiding plagiarism: Correct citation use helps prevent and protect you from plagiarizing.