Cathy Aranda
Cathy Aranda

A Comprehensive List of Citation Terms and Verbs for Scholars

21 min read

Published on: Jun 14, 2024

Last updated on: Jun 24, 2024

citation terms

Understanding citations can sometimes feel like a confusing task.

Whether you're a student, researcher, or writer, knowing the right citation terms is important for giving credit to your sources and keeping your work credible. But don't worry—you're in the right place! This blog will explain common citation terms in a simple and clear way so you can use them with confidence.

From "abstract" to "voice," we'll cover a variety of terms used in citation styles like APA, MLA, and Chicago. Whether you're wondering what "DOI" means or how to use "ibid.," we've got easy-to-understand definitions, examples, and explanations for you.

Let's get started and go through the glossary of citation terms that will help make your writing and research easier.

Citation Terms Glossary

Here is a comprehensive of citation terminology that you need to know:

Author

The individual or group responsible for creating a work. In citations, the author's name is usually listed first to give them credit.

Citation Style: 

  • All major citation styles (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.)

Example:

  • Smith, J.

Abstract

A brief summary of a research article, thesis, review, or other scholarly document that highlights the main points and findings.

Citation Style: 

  • Commonly used in APA and Chicago styles.

Example:

  • APA: "Abstract: This study examines the effects of..."
  • Chicago: "Abstract: An overview of the major findings in..."

Annotation

A note added to a text to explain, comment on, or cite a reference. In citations, annotations are used to provide additional context or a summary of the source.

Citation Style: 

  • Primarily used in annotated bibliographies in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Example:

  • APA: Smith, J. (2020). *Understanding AI*. New York, NY: Tech Press. This book provides a comprehensive overview of artificial intelligence and its applications.
  • MLA: Smith, John. *Understanding AI*. Tech Press, 2020. This book provides a comprehensive overview of artificial intelligence and its applications.

Attribution

Acknowledging the source of information or ideas that are not originally your own. This is crucial in avoiding plagiarism.

Citation Style: 

  • All major citation styles (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.)

Example:

  • APA: (Smith, 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith 20)

Annotated Bibliography 

List of citations to books, articles, and documents, each followed by a brief descriptive and evaluative paragraph (the annotation).

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Example:

  • APA: Smith, J. (2020). *Understanding AI*. New York, NY: Tech Press.

This book provides a comprehensive overview of artificial intelligence and its applications. It is particularly useful for beginners and includes practical examples.

  • MLA: Smith, John. *Understanding AI*. Tech Press, 2020.

This book provides a comprehensive overview of artificial intelligence and its applications. It is particularly useful for beginners and includes practical examples.

Bibliography

A list of all the sources cited in a scholarly work, usually found at the end of the document. It provides full details of each source.

  • Citation Style: 

Commonly used in Chicago and MLA styles.

Expert Tip

Read this blog to learn how to create a bibliography in Chicago style.

Block Quote

A long quotation (usually more than 40 words) that is set off from the main text by starting on a new line and indenting from the left margin.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Examples:

  • APA: Smith (2020) states:

This study examines the effects of AI on various industries. The findings indicate that AI has the potential to revolutionize the way businesses operate, offering efficiencies and new opportunities for growth.

  • MLA: Smith explains:

This study examines the effects of AI on various industries. The findings indicate that AI has the potential to revolutionize the way businesses operate, offering efficiencies and new opportunities for growth.

Citation

A reference to a source of information used in a scholarly work, providing necessary details for the reader to locate the original source.

Citation Style: 

  • All major citation styles (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.)

Example:

  • APA: (Smith, 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith 20)

Cf.

An abbreviation for the Latin word "confer," meaning "compare." It is used in citations to direct the reader to other works for comparison.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, Chicago, and other scholarly styles.

Example:

  • APA: Cf. Smith, 2020, for a different perspective.
  • Chicago: Cf. Smith, Understanding AI, 2020.

Concept Map

A visual representation of concepts and their relationships, used to organize and structure knowledge.

Citation Style: 

  • Not specific to a citation style, but often used in educational and research contexts.

Copyright

A legal right granted to the creator of original work for its use and distribution, typically lasting for the creator's lifetime plus 70 years.

Citation Style: 

  • Mentioned in all major citation styles when necessary.

Example:

  • APA: © 2020 by John Smith.
  • MLA: © 2020 by John Smith.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier)

DOI is a unique alphanumeric string assigned to a document, such as a journal article, to provide a permanent link to its location on the internet.

  • Citation Style: 

Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Examples:

  • APA: Smith, J. (2020). Understanding AI. *Journal of Tech Studies, 15*(2), 45-60. https://doi.org/10.1234/abcd.5678
  • MLA: Smith, John. "Understanding AI." *Journal of Tech Studies*, vol. 15, no. 2, 2020, pp. 45-60. https://doi.org/10.1234/abcd.5678.

Endnote

A note at the end of a chapter or document that provides additional information or citations for the text.

Citation Style: 

  • Commonly used in Chicago and some humanities disciplines.

Example: 

  • 1. John Smith, *Understanding AI* (New York: Tech Press, 2020), 45.

Expert Tip

Here's a detailed blog on "Endnotes" for your help. 

Et al.

Et al. is an abbreviation for the Latin phrase "et alii," meaning "and others." Used to cite a source with multiple authors without listing all names.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Example:

  • APA: (Smith et al., 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith et al. 20)

Footnote

A note at the bottom of the page that provides additional information or citations for the text.

Citation Style: 

  • Commonly used in Chicago and some humanities disciplines.

Example:

  • 1. John Smith, *Understanding AI* (New York: Tech Press, 2020), 45.

Expert Tip

Read more about footnotes in detail to learn how to create footnotes. 

f./ff.

Abbreviations for "folio" and "folios following," used to indicate a single page (f.) or multiple pages (ff.) in citations.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in Chicago and some historical and literary disciplines.

Example:

  • Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45f.
  • Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45ff.

Hanging Indent

A formatting style where the first line of a citation is flush with the left margin, and subsequent lines are indented.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and other styles for reference lists and bibliographies.

Example:

  • APA: Smith, J. (2020). Understanding AI. New York, NY: Tech Press.
  • MLA: Smith, John. *Understanding AI*. Tech Press, 2020.

Ibid.

Ibid. is an abbreviation for the Latin word "ibidem," meaning "in the same place." It is used in footnotes or endnotes to refer to a source that was cited immediately before.

Citation Style: 

  • Commonly used in Chicago and some humanities disciplines.

Example:

  • 1. John Smith, *Understanding AI* (New York: Tech Press, 2020), 45.
  • 2. Ibid., 47.

Idem./Eadem

Latin terms meaning "the same" (idem for masculine and neuter, eadem for feminine). Used in legal and classical scholarship to refer to the same author mentioned previously.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in legal and classical texts.

Example:

  • Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45.

Idem, 50.

In-Text Citation

A brief citation within the text that directs the reader to the full citation in the reference list or bibliography. It typically includes the author's last name and the publication year or page number.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Example:

  • APA: (Smith, 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith 20)

ISBN

Stands for International Standard Book Number, a unique identifier for books, allowing for easier cataloging and purchasing.

Citation Style: 

  • Mentioned in all major citation styles when listing books.

Example:

  • APA: Smith, J. (2020). *Understanding AI*. New York, NY: Tech Press. ISBN 978-3-16-148410-0.
  • MLA: Smith, John. *Understanding AI*. Tech Press, 2020. ISBN 978-3-16-148410-0.

Jargon

Specialized terminology associated with a specific field or area of study. Not specific to citation but important in understanding and interpreting texts within a discipline.

Citation Style: 

  • Not specific to any citation style.

Example: 

  • Jargon used in AI might include terms like "machine learning," "neural networks," etc.

Loc. cit.

An abbreviation for the Latin "loco citato," meaning "in the place cited." Used in footnotes or endnotes to refer to the same page number of a work previously cited.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in Chicago and some classical and historical texts.

Example:

  • 1. Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45.
  • 2. Smith, loc. cit.

Notation

A system of symbols and signs used to represent information, often used in scholarly writing to make references clear and concise.

Citation Style: 

  • Not specific to any citation style, but critical in academic and research writing.

Op. cit.

An abbreviation for the Latin "opere citato," meaning "in the work cited." Used to refer to a source previously cited, often when other sources have been cited in between.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in Chicago and some classical and historical texts.

Example:

  • 1. Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45.
  • 2. Jones, *AI and Society*, 30.
  • 3. Smith, op. cit., 47.

Parenthetical Citation

A brief citation within parentheses in the text that directs the reader to the full citation in the reference list. It usually includes the author's last name and the publication year or page number.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA and MLA styles.

Example:

  • APA: (Smith, 2020)
  • MLA: (Smith 20)

Paraphrasing

The act of rephrasing someone else's ideas in your own words while maintaining the original meaning. It still requires citation to credit the original source.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in all major citation styles.

Example:

  • APA: Smith (2020) discusses the impact of AI on various industries.
  • MLA: Smith explains the impact of AI on various industries (20).

Peer Reviewed

Refers to articles or papers that have been evaluated by experts in the field before publication to ensure quality and credibility.

Citation Style: 

  • Mentioned in the context of scholarly sources but not specific to a citation format.

Point of View

The perspective from which a text is written, which can affect the interpretation and analysis of the content. Important for understanding biases and contexts in sources.

Citation Style: 

  • Not specific to any citation style.

Quoting

Using the exact words from a source, enclosed in quotation marks. Proper citation is required to credit the original author.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in all major citation styles.

Example:

  • APA: Smith (2020) states, "AI has the potential to revolutionize industries" (p. 45).
  • MLA: Smith states, "AI has the potential to revolutionize industries" (45).

Reference List

A list of all sources cited in a scholarly work, usually found at the end of the document. It includes full details of each source, allowing readers to locate them.

Citation Style: 

  • Primarily used in APA style.

Example:

  • Smith, J. (2020). Understanding AI. New York, NY: Tech Press.

Refereed

Another term for "peer-reviewed," referring to articles or papers that have been evaluated by experts in the field before publication to ensure quality and credibility.

Citation Style: 

  • Mentioned in the context of scholarly sources but not specific to a citation format.

References Page

Another term for "Reference List," used in APA style to list all sources cited in a scholarly work.

Citation Style: 

  • Primarily used in APA style.

Expert Tip

Check out this blog on APA reference page to learn more about it.

Secondary quotation 

A quotation taken from a source that is cited within another source. It is used when the original source is not available, and the citation must include both the original and the secondary source.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Example:


  • APA: (Smith, 2020, as cited in Johnson, 2021)
  • MLA: (qtd. in Johnson 2021)

Short title

A brief version of the title used in citations to help readers identify the source without quoting the full title. Often used in footnotes or in-text citations.

Citation Style: 

  • Used in Chicago and MLA styles.

Example:

  • Chicago: Smith, *Understanding AI*, 45.
  • MLA: ("Understanding AI" 45)

Voice

The distinctive style or manner of expression of an author or text. It is not specific to citation but important in writing and analyzing texts.

Citation Style: 

  • Not specific to any citation style.

Works Cited

A list of all sources cited in a scholarly work, usually found at the end of the document. It includes full details of each source, allowing readers to locate them.

Citation Style: 

  • Primarily used in MLA style.

Expert Tip

Read this blog to learn how to create an MLA work cited page with examples.

Verbs for Citation

When incorporating citations into your writing, choosing the right verb can enhance the clarity and impact of your argument. Here are some useful verbs for different contexts to help you accurately attribute information to your sources:

Neutral Verbs

These verbs are useful for straightforwardly presenting information without implying any judgment.

  • States: Smith (2020) states that AI has transformed various industries.
  • Mentions: The report mentions the rapid growth of AI technology (Johnson, 2021).
  • Notes: Brown (2019) notes the importance of ethical considerations in AI development.
  • Describes: The study describes several applications of AI in healthcare (Davis, 2018).
  • Observes: Green (2022) observes a correlation between AI adoption and productivity increases.

Supportive Verbs

These verbs suggest that the source provides evidence or supports your argument.

  • Confirms: The research confirms previous findings on AI efficiency (Miller, 2020).
  • Demonstrates: Lee (2019) demonstrates the effectiveness of machine learning algorithms.
  • Supports: The data supports the hypothesis that AI can reduce operational costs (Garcia, 2021).
  • Shows: The analysis shows a significant improvement in performance (Clark, 2018).
  • Validates: The results validate the proposed AI model's accuracy (Wilson, 2022).

Critical Verbs

These verbs are helpful when discussing sources that offer critique or analysis.

  • Argues: Thompson (2021) argues that current AI regulations are insufficient.
  • Challenges: The author challenges the notion that AI will replace human jobs (Evans, 2020).
  • Questions: Carter (2019) questions the ethical implications of autonomous systems.
  • Criticizes: Smith (2020) criticizes the lack of transparency in AI decision-making.
  • Disputes: The paper disputes the claim that AI is infallible (Roberts, 2021).

Reporting Verbs

These verbs are used to convey what someone has said or written, often in a more formal context.

  • Reports: The article reports a breakthrough in AI research (Jones, 2020).
  • Claims: The author claims that AI will lead to economic growth (Taylor, 2019).
  • Announces: The company announces new advancements in AI technology (White, 2021).
  • Reveals: The study reveals previously unknown effects of AI on mental health (Lopez, 2018).
  • States: Johnson (2019) states that AI has the potential to revolutionize many fields.

Using a variety of verbs not only makes your writing more engaging but also provides a clearer picture of how each source contributes to your work. 

In conclusion, mastering citation terms is crucial for any scholar, student, or writer. This comprehensive glossary covers a wide array of terms used in various citation styles, such as APA, MLA, and Chicago. From understanding what an "abstract" is to using "ibid." correctly, this blog has provided clear definitions and examples to help you navigate the world of citations with confidence. 

So, whether you're compiling an annotated bibliography or crafting a research paper, refer back to this glossary to ensure your citations are accurate and your work is credible. You can also get help from our citation generator to save some hard work!

Happy citing!

Cathy Aranda

WRITTEN BY

Cathy Aranda (Marketing)

Cathy is a highly dedicated author who has been writing for the platform for over five years. With a Master's degree in Mass Communication, she is well-versed in various forms of writing such as articles, press releases, blog posts, and whitepapers. As an essay writing guide author at PerfectEssayWriter.ai, she has been helping students and professionals improve their writing skills by offering practical tips on research, citation, sentence structure, and style.

Cathy is a highly dedicated author who has been writing for the platform for over five years. With a Master's degree in Mass Communication, she is well-versed in various forms of writing such as articles, press releases, blog posts, and whitepapers. As an essay writing guide author at PerfectEssayWriter.ai, she has been helping students and professionals improve their writing skills by offering practical tips on research, citation, sentence structure, and style.

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