[ arbor : tree ] + [ borealis : northern ]

Citing your sources

Decorative frame underlining the title of the page, "Citing your sources."

This page forms part of the Terms and Conditions governing use of the website, Arborealis.

Citing your sources involves acknowledging other researchers’ work and providing correct attribution to them in your source citations or bibliography. Best practices in research include giving credit where it is due. Further, citing your sources correctly is a hallmark of both rigorous research standards and collegial courtesy.

However, giving credit is not the same as observing copyright or other forms of ethical use of information. Please also refer to the section, Copyright notice and when in doubt, use the Contact form to forward requests for permission to use from the editor of Arborealis.

If you have obtained permission to use information from the editor of Arborealis, then:

  1. the name of the document;
  2. the date that the document was issued, and where it was issued;
  3. the name of the issuer;
  4. the essential details reported in the document (name, place, date, &c.);
  5. any reference number of unique identifier printed on or otherwise issued with the document;
  6. the date on which you received a copy or transcript of the document; and,
  7. if applicable, the name of the transcriber, and the name of the book, website, or other medium from or to which the transcriber published the transcript.

For example, the following would be an appropriate source note or bibliographical reference for an English death certificate:

Certified Copy of an Entry of Death, given at the General Register Office, England, 19 September 2008. Extract: James Dickson, died 14 December 1888, at Barnet, age 52 years, cause of death: phthisis, informant: Ann Barton. Registration district: Barnet, in the counties of Hertford and Middlesex; application no. 537007-1, registration no. DYC 071829. Transcribed by Alison Kilpatrick, and posted online to Arborealis (accessed 28 June 2014).

See also :

Bookcase with reference sources; to illustrate the "Cite your sources" page.

End notes :

Source citation for this page: — Kilpatrick, Alison. “Citing your sources.” Published to Arborealis,, accessed [Insert date of access].

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Updated 22nd Nov. 2023.