CSE Citation in a History Paper: How to Use It

If you ever got instructions to write a history paper, your professor probably told you to be careful with plagiarism. Plagiarizing is a serious violation of the academic code of conduct. Students often get confused; they think that as long as they paraphrase online sources and get their content clean through Copyscape, they’ve avoided plagiarism. But the issue is deeper than that. Whenever you get inspired by a source and you use information provided by it, you have to include it in a properly formatted citation.

You don’t have to provide citations for commonly known history facts. But if you’re using elements of someone else’s research and opinion work, you need to give them credit.
For history papers, professors usually require you to use the CSE citation format. We’ll give you brief tips that help you implement it in your writing.

1. Understand Why Citations Are Important

Citing resources is something teachers should teach from early education. But in most cases, young students aren’t interested in boring referencing standards. Academic writing is challenging as an overall concept. It’s too abstract, formal, and un-relatable to their interests. Citations make it even more overwhelming. The inability of teachers to make academic writing fun extends into the later stages of education.

Suddenly, college students are faced with higher standards that they have to meet. Nobody will ask whether you like writing history papers or not. You’ll get those assignments, and you’ll have no other option but to complete them. Without proper references, you’ll get a lower grade. In the worst-case scenario, your paper will get the plagiarized label.

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Don’t be scared of citations. The guidelines may seem overwhelming at first, but they are easy to understand. Once you realize how the CSE style works, you’ll have no problem formatting all other history papers in the future.

2. Read the CSE Citation Style Guide

Does your university provide a citation style guide on its official website? If not; you can easily find the CSE rules online. You can ask your professor for a trusted source that can guide you.

The rules might overwhelm you at first. That’s because they are “dry” guidelines that make academic writing even more formal than it already is. But check out the examples provided with those rules, and they will clarify the whole concept of referencing.

3. Recognize the Most Important Features of CSE

These are the things to keep in mind when referencing by the CSE standard:

  • Each source has to be cited both in-text and in the bibliography.
  • Paraphrase your sources instead of using quotes. Long quotes are rarely acceptable in academic writing. You should adapt the style of your sources to suit your own writing, and use only the parts you need. Still, you have to provide references every single time.
  • CSE approves three types of in-text citations: Citation-Name, Citation-Sequence, and Name-Year. Ask your professor what style they prefer. If you’re allowed to use any, choose one and keep it consistent throughout the paper.
  • In-text citations are provided in parentheses.
  • The Cited References part of your paper should list all sources in alphabetical order. The arrangement of your references will depend on the style you chose to follow for the in-text citations.

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4. Use An Automated Citation Generator

Once you learn how to reference a source in CSE format, it will be easy for you to write in-text and bibliography citations. But let’s face it: diligent formatting still takes a lot of time. There’s an easy way to do it: use an automated CSE format citation generator. It’s an irreplaceable tool for students who want to save time and energy during the writing process. You can focus on writing and get instant citations without interrupting the creative flow. Students who rely on automated citation tools are less likely to need help in writing, since the process is less frustrating for them.

Make sure to check the citations that the tool delivers for you. Maybe you misspelled an author’s name when providing it, or you made another unintentional mistake.

5. Check and edit your citations

Are you one of those students who hate the editing part? Maybe you don’t hate it, but you often miss it for the sake of saving time. By the time you get to this stage, you’ve had enough with writing and you just want to submit that paper already.

Skipping the editing stage is a big mistake. You might end up submitting a paper with wrong dates, flaws in the logical flow, and unreadable sentences. What about the citations, do you have to proofread them, too? Yes! You should make sure that all references are included in the text and bibliography. Check if the formatting is consistent, and fix any misspellings (they often occur with foreign author names).

Take your time with history papers

History papers are more challenging than most students assume. The research stage takes a lot of time, and that’s when the referencing starts. You have to keep track of all the sources you’re going to use. When you start writing, you have to include the references as you go. Otherwise, you might unintentionally miss some of them and get in the dreaded zone of plagiarism.

Always take your time with academic writing! That means you need to start working on the project as soon as your professor assigns it. Even if it feels like you have a lot of time before the deadline, start the research stage right away. Diligence delivers better results than rushed work!

BIO: Julius Sim has an unusual hobby: he enjoys academic research and writing. Give him a topic, and he’ll dig into the resources right away. Through his blog posts, Julius tries to inspire students to realize how fun essays can be!

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