Anyone who at least once wrote an essay faced the problem of citing the sources used. The inexperienced writers always have a number of questions: “Do you need quotations at all?” “How many quotes is it allowed to include in your text?” Let's try to answer these questions for all students who want to know how to write an essay, including quotes. All the rules and tips specified in the article can be successfully applied when writing not only essays but also other academic papers, in particular, research papers, a coursework, etc.

When Should You Use Citation in an Essay?

There is almost no an academic paper, in which there is not a single quote. When the thought or statement of famous scientists appears in the essay, the work becomes more complete. There are two types of quotes you should be able to differentiate:

  • The fragment is borrowed from the classics, which is subsequently carefully analyzed;
  • Quoting utterances from secondary sources, the purpose of which is to illustrate or analyze the author's quotation from the critical point of view of the author of the paper.

How many quotations to use depends on the topic of the research. Citations are usually included only to give the appearance of the scientific nature of the work or when the content of the fragment cannot be conveyed in your own words, since the already existing formulation very clearly and accurately conveys the basic idea.

Things to Keep in Mind When Citing Sources in an Essay

There are several rules of using quotations in an essay. Take them into account when formatting your school/college/university essay:

  • Fragments of the literature that you use, which is critical in itself, should be quoted only in cases of confirmation of your thoughts, conclusions, or for proving the wording of the new statements you have entered.
  • If the phrase is banal, that is, anyone could say it, you do not need to emphasize its authorship. This also applies to widely disseminated statistics, especially when the author is little known.
  • A long quote can be shortened, replacing the secondary fragments with three dots. However, do not abuse this technique, because there is a big risk to distort the meaning of the author's quotation.

In case you cannot agree with the quotation given, and use it to challenge the essence, you must specify this either before or after the expression. This is a good way to set out a personal point of view.

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