Reading Citations

This Research Minute video explains how to read citations.

Video Transcript: 

Welcome to research minutes, 90 seconds of research tips for you, the busy student from us, the librarians. In this research minute, we're looking at how to read citations.

Student: “I found a bibliography that looks really useful for my paper. How can I find these references in the library?”

Librarian: “The three most common types of materials cited in bibliographies are whole books, articles in books, and articles in journals. To find them in the library you need to know which one is which."

Student: “Is this a book?”

Librarian: “Let's see. Book references usually cite the city where the book is published, the publisher name, and the year of publication. Sometimes the name of the publisher or the city is omitted. Yes, this reference is a book.”

Student: “How will I know if it's an article in a book?”

Librarian: “To recognize books of articles or essays, the best clue is the word ‘in.’ Following the word ‘in,’ the reference will list the editors and title of the book in which the article appears. Search for the title of the book in the library catalog, not the article title. For journal articles, the word ‘in’ does not appear in the reference. Instead, journals have a volume number, followed by an issue number, or an issue date. To locate Cornell's copy of a journal article, whether it's in print or electronic format, search for the title of the journal in the library catalog.”

Student: “Okay, so I just identify the book title or the periodical title then I find it using the library catalog?"

Librarian: “That's right and good luck with your paper.”

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