Tell Us Who Said It! Incorporating Sources into Your Paper ~~~~~~~~~~ Presented by The Student Learning Commons
Here’s what this presentation covers... The role of sources in supporting an academic argument How and why to quote sources How and why to paraphrase sources Links to resources for using and citing sources correctly
To start, can you answer these questions? What are 2 – 3 examples of “scholarly” sources? How do you know they’re “scholarly” (what features do they have)? Why do you think you’re being asked to use scholarly / academic sources rather than other types of sources?
If you had any trouble, try these resources… A definition of scholarly / academic sources Main features of scholarly / academic sources The importance of scholarly / academic sources… They expand the writer’s key points, and/or support the writer’s position (argument, thesis). CITATION is a foundational practice in academe. You can think of it as a bit like engaging in a dialogue with others interested in similar ideas or issues.
Many ways to argue … academically Arguments of FACT= proving or disproving a statement with specific evidence. Be aware that so-called “facts” may themselves be contentious and complex. See this example. Arguments of DEFINITION—determining whether a thing/concept belongs in a contested category. See this example. Arguments of EVALUATION—raising issues of quality or value. One “presents criteria and then measures people, ideas, or things against those standards” (Lunsford & Ruszkeiwicz, Everything’s an Argument, 1999, p. 16). See this example.
How will others judge our arguments? WHAT’S MY POINT? Is there a claim? Is it controversial? Debatable? Can I demonstrate it through logic or evidence? HOW DO I JUSTIFY MY CLAIM? What is the evidence to back it up? What basic principles warrant (justify) the claim? What ground do these principles stand on? Does the claim need to be qualified? Is any concession necessary?
How does a reasonable claim work? Gender inequality continues to be a problem at least partly because well-meaning men traditionally enjoy more access to power and resources—including the channels producing influential public discourse (see Diamond and Quinby, 1988; de Lauretis, 1987; Ferguson, 1984; Foss, 1996; Lips, 1991; and Oldersma and Davis, 1991). ~~~~~ Notice the use of PARAPHRASE in this example, expressing an entire GENERAL trend of argumentation which with a number of sources (in parentheses) agree. This is a useful citation strategy for introductory or wide-ranging claims.
How does a reasonable claim work? Gender inequality continues to be a problem at least partly because well-meaning men traditionally enjoy more access to power and resources—including the channels producing influential public discourse (see Diamond and Quinby, 1988; de Lauretis, 1987; Ferguson, 1984; Foss, 1996; Lips, 1991; and Oldersma and Davis, 1991). ~~~~~ Reasonable claims are backed by appropriate EVIDENCE and are WARRANTED by social or contextual assumptions that your ideal readers share. Good claims also have QUALIFIERS, and they may also CONCEDE the existence of possible opposing views.
How does a reasonable claim work? EVIDENCE? The scholarly sources cited in parentheses WARRANT(S)? The establishment / importance of gender equity as a social issue and serious area of scholarly investigation QUALIFIER(S)? “at least partly”…“well-meaning” CONCESSION ? “traditionally” (some might argue that for many men today, this is no longer the case)
Don’t just brain-dump—organize! While reading, taking notes, or researching, use KEY WORDS to keep your ideas organized. ~~~ Record notes and citations using RefWorks (a handy library tool) or old-fashioned note-cards …
A “bibliography” card… CALL NUMBER/ DATABASE INFO Full Bibliographical Info (author/s, title, publication info, year, page-range (for article or chapter), URL, date you retrieved URL … General summary of source (very brief) and/or exact quote
A “note-card”… KEY WORD(S) Last name/short title of source ONE significant exact quote, paraphrased idea, set of facts, or concept from this source. Adding your own comment is good practice. + PAGE number(s) if applicable
A sample rough outline … Don’t be concerned if it doesn’t look pretty to start!
Remember… To create at least two (or more) well developed sub-points under each part of your outline. To seek out opposing or alternative ideas so your paper isn’t one-sided.
Use scholarly sources to support your arguments, not to make them… Don’t pack your paper with QUOTES. Use them to present specific or emphatic evidence, or when analyzing a primary text. • “…quotations are only one type of evidence: well-balanced papers may also make use of paraphrases, data, and statistics” (University of N. Carolina--WCWeb) • It’s good practice to paraphrase source material (i.e. condense using your own words) as much as possible.
Use paraphrasing as support to … • Convey a source’s overall approach or position • Provide “the gist” of a passage, argument, or chapter • Synthesize or combine the arguments/positions or two or more sources • Enhance your credibility as a writer—good paraphrasing indicates that you’re knowledgeable about your sources. Visit this U of Toronto web site for more information about paraphrasing…
More on why & how to use exact quotes... Quotations (University College Writing, Univ of Toronto) Using Quotations (Hamilton College Writing Center) Incorporating Literary Quotations (Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison Writing Center)
More on why & how to use sources... Using the Work of Other Authors (Central European University, Centre for Academic Writing) Using Sources (Hamilton College Writing Center) Writing a Rough Draft and Incorporating Sources (University of Illinois – Springfield) And don’t forget…SFU Library’s Citation Guide for APA style
Need more assistance? Visit the Student Learning Commons for additional resources or for a one-on-one consultation with a learning/writing peer.