Why is Referencing Your Sources So Important in Academic Writing?

Editorial Team

Why is Referencing Your Sources So Important in Academic Writing

One of the most dreaded tasks that students and academicians are both weary of is referencing or citing their sources before they submit their written works or thesis. Very often, people overlook the importance of this step and don’t end up citing all their sources, even if they’ve referenced numerous authors and books during the course of their research.

However, this is one of the biggest mistakes they’re making, since there are so many hidden reasons why they should cite all their sources once they’re done. In this blog, we’re going to be explaining why you need to go the extra mile to reference all your sources and why this will pay off in the long run. Let’s get started!

1. Eliminate the chances of your work being pulled down for plagiarism

If you’re doing research on a particular subject, then there’s a chance that you’re referring to multiple sources of wisdom from the past as you make your way through the journey. Even if the field you’re working on has never been worked on before, there are reasons for why you’ve made it this far in the journey and that’s thanks to others who initially laid the groundwork down for your line of work.

As a result of this, you may often come across theories or suggestions that are similar to what others have already said in their works, or you may find something that you’d like to include in your work as a supporting thesis or theory as well. Whatever the reason might be, it’s always best to mention this thought process in your resources, as that will eliminate the chances of your work being pulled down or disregarded for plagiarism.

For instance, many works that are truly insightful have often lost their credibility simply because it was marked down for plagiarism. However, by giving due credit to the original authors and thinkers, you’ll be able to make sure your work stands the test of time.

Additionally, if you’re writing this paper for a graded exam then there are chances that you may lose marks if your supervisor feels that you’ve plagiarised content without giving the sources in your credits – all this can be avoided.

2. Gain more visibility for your work

By referencing your sources, you not only give your work more credibility but also increase your chances of your work being pulled up more often, especially online. What this means is that as you mention more authors and their works in your submission, online search engines and other sites for research will automatically pull it up each time anyone searches for any works of any one of the sources you’ve mentioned in your references.

Because of this, your work may get pulled up ten times more often than if you had not referenced many authors – since the chances of your work getting searched for often during the initial days of your research are fairly low. As the credibility of your paper increases, so will other search engines drag up your works when anything close to your subject of interest is searched for.

Additionally, another way in which you can increase your visibility is by finding new ways to make your paper or thesis stand out from the crowd. As humans, we seek visual appeal in almost everything we see, so having a paper that is not only intellectually sound but also visually appealing will go a long way. You could also consider inserting data and visuals in the form of images to help readers understand your findings better.

3. How you can easily reference sources in your writing

Now that we’ve gone over the “why” of it, it’s time to tackle the “how”.Citing sources can be a pain, especially if you’ve referenced numerous works and don’t know how to manually reference each work individually. What’s worse is that each style of paper follows different ways of citing sources, so it can be extremely tiresome to do everything one way and then figure out that you have to redo everything that you’ve just done.

That’s why it’s easier to use a free online resource that allows you to immediately generate citations in any format you need, like an APA format generator. With this, all the sources you want to reference will be listed in the right format within a matter of seconds, and you won’t have to spend a week working on your citations like you otherwise would have.

4. Credibility with evidence go a long way

Think of it this way – there are very few scholars and thinkers who are going to take what you’re saying seriously unless you have some serious evidence to back it up. Humans generally tend to look for evidence in everything they hear, read about, or see – so it’s only natural that they will want to see why you’re saying what you’re saying in your paper.

This doesn’t mean that you aren’t allowed to say anything original that doesn’t have proof already, but you’ll need to be able to lead up to why you came to your conclusion using the theories and works of others as well.

Apart from increasing your visibility, it will also enable others to see the connections you’ve made and understand the conclusion you’ve come to. As a result of this, your work may even be used as a citation source by others who are also working on similar subjects in your line of work. Happy research!