How To Compose A Research Paper Bibliography Outline: Useful Hints

Every mature writer knows what intellectual property is. Every time you write a book or research paper, you need to cite the sources of information in order to give credit to the original proponents of the idea so that you will not be charged with plagiarism. This is mainly important because if you fail to do it, it’s like you are stealing something very important from a person. For beginners, here are some useful hints in order that you will be able to cite your sources of information correctly:

  • Gather or collect all the important reading materials that you utilized in doing the research. This will help you prepare and organize your bibliography.
  • Manage your sources by writing them first in your rough draft. A single pen and a small notebook will do.
  • Ask or clarify the bibliographical format from your professor. Since there are many forms of bibliography, you should ask for the specific instruction.
  • Make sure you spell correctly all the names (i.e. of the author/s) in your outline. It’s a basic rule. Wrong spelling is wrong.
  • Provide the exact date/ year. Whether it is for the publication or edition of a book, you must be accurate.
  • Spell out the complete title of the book. Do not abbreviate or make a shortcut so as not to make it very unprofessional.
  • Watch out for the different formats of your sources. If you got the information from a newspaper or retrieved it from a website, the format is different with that of regular textbooks or journals.
  • Do not miss out the colon (:) to separate the main title from its subtitle. A lot of important punctuations are placed between important information in your bibliography. Make sure you indicate them correctly and properly.
  • Take note that capitalization is very important in writing a bibliography. Imagine if you write using a small letter the name/s of the authors. Always stick to the rule.
  • Pay attention to some significant abbreviations. Do not ignore or remove them because they mean a lot in your bibliography. An example is (et al.) a Latin term which means “and others” ( for books with multiple authors)
  • Mention correctly the publisher and the place of publication. They are important components so don’t miss them out.
  • Check all supplemental information in your bibliographical outline. Examples are the pages where the information is taken, the size of the book, etc.
  • Arrange all your sources in alphabetical order. This is a standard procedure that you should follow in writing a bibliography.

When you have followed all the instructions in citing your sources, there will be no ensuing headaches and worries later on. You are certain that no one will ever sue you for stealing intellectual property.


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