When you write a research paper, you use facts, information and ideas from various sources to support your own ideas and develop new ones. Books, print articles, DVDs, electronic information from databases, interviews, and Web sites are examples of sources you might use. Citing your sources is vital because citations:
What is plagiarism and is it serious?
Plagiarism is a form of cheating in which you use another's words or ideas as if they were your own. Plagiarism can result in failure of an assignment or even failure of a course. Repeated plagiarism may result in expulsion.
Whenever you use an author's exact language in your paper, make certain to use quotation marks to indicate what words are the author's and then cite the quotation. When you change the author's words to your paraphrase the author's ideas, make certain you cite.
MLA - Modern Language Association (web page)
MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers - Eighth Edition (Reference LB2369 .G53 2016)
APA - American Psychological Association (web page)
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association - Sixth Edition (Reference BF76.7 .P83 2010)