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Critical Assessment of Primary and Secondary Sources

Plagiarism FAQs

UMD Academic Regulations and Procedures - Read this passage from your student handbook!

Avoiding Plagiarism - OWL Guide from Purdue - This emphasizes when to give credit to sources and offers safe practices to follow.

Using the Chicago Manual

Research in the humanities usually prefers one of two citation styles: Chicago or MLA. The Chicago style is which is published in the Chicago Manual of Style while MLA is published in the MLA Handbook, (formerly the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers). The library has copies of the most recent editions of both styles. 

Information on other citation styles can be found on the library's "Citing Sources" page.

Sample citations

It is important to note that neither MLA or Chicago/Turabian provide explicit instructions on how to cite 'archival' primary sources (although they do have guidelines for things like 'unpublished manuscripts' and oral histories), so the following are some guidelines that meet MLA/Chicago standards. Always double check which format your professor prefers and provide the appropriate bibliographic information using that format.  

Always remember that archival material is more complex to identify than books or journal articles making the accuracy of citations more critical: a citation is designed to get a reader back to the original document.

The following elements are the basic information you need for a complete citation in your bibliography:

Author or creator’s name

Title/type of the work

Date

Publication information [if any]

Collection name

Box and Folder

Repository

Examples

Archival Files:

Silva, Judge Milton. "Letter to Mario Medeiros.  January 24, 1989." Milton Silva personal and professional papers.  MC 93. Box 1, folder 6. Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives. University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

“Dedication of Chesed Shel Emes Congregation, 1094”. Chesed Shel Emes Congregation Records, 1903-1970. MC 25.  Box 1, folder 2. Center for Jewish Culture Archives. University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Audio-Visual:

“Oral History of Rosario Potvin”. Interview by Beatrice Pacheco. October 6, 1980. New Bedford Textile Worker’s Strike of 1928. MC 9.  Box 7, tape 13. Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives. University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Need help?

Do you have questions about the exercises you just did?

Do you have questions about finding primary and secondary sources for your own research?

If so, please feel free to reach out to me and ask!

I am available for virtual consultations or through chat (you can type your question below). You can set up an appointment with me via email, the calendar link or chat. 

Archives and Special Collections is currently open for collection consultation by appointment. Please contact me to set up an appointment.

Librarian

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Sonia Pacheco
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Contact:
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Claire T. Carney Library
Ferreira-Mendes Portuguese-American Archives
Room M07 (Map to my office)
285 Old Westport Road
Dartmouth, MA 02747

spacheco@umassd.edu
508-999-8695