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SPH Writing Support Services

Getting started with SPH Writing Support Services

Citing Sources

It is critical for you to understand why and to know how to cite sources appropriately. By citing sources incorporated into your work, you are doing two important things related to research: (a) giving proper credit to others for their ideas, and (b) providing a roadmap for those readers who want to learn more about the topic you have written about. Failure to cite your sources correctly or to give credit to others appropriately is plagiarism! 

Several universities have produced brief video tutorials explaining the importance of citing sources (e.g., North Carolina State University), which we recommend you watch if you need a "refresher" on this critical research task.

‚ÄčIf you have specific questions on how to avoid plagiarism or if you need help with citations, speak with your instructor and schedule an appointment with Writing Support Services.


RefWorks is a Web-based tool, accessible from any computer connected to Internet, for collecting, accessing, organizing, citing, and sharing citations including articles, books, websites, and more. It does not require additional software although you can download Write-N-Cite, a utility that adds citations directly into your MS Word document. 

RefWorks is FREE for current SPH students, staff, and faculty, as well as for SPH alumni!

The UTHealth School of Public Health Library created a RefWorks LibGuide that contains several RefWorks handouts.

American Psychological Association (APA) Style

The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association was created by the APA, and contains the complete guidelines on how to format material for publication and cite your research. It is a set of style rules that codifies the components of scientific writing in order to deliver concise and bias-free information to the reader.  

It is highly recommended that you keep the Publication Manual by your side throughout the writing process.

Print copies of the Publication Manual are available at the UTHealth School of Public Health Library:

Call number: WZ 345 P82 2020

American Medical Association (AMA) Style

The AMA Manual of Style is a writing resource for the medical, social sciences, and scientific publishing community. The first edition of the manual was published in 1962 by the AMA, and was originally intended as a guide, primarily, for in-house staff and, secondarily, for authors. Since then, the manual, now in its 10th edition, has grown from 68 pages to 1,032 pages!

This is a must-have guide for anyone involved in medical and scientific publishing.

Electronic copies of the manual are available through the UTHealth School of Public Health Library.

Hardcover copies of the manual are available at the TMC Library.

Call number: WZ 345 A512 2007

AMA Style Help

AMA Style Insider is the official blog of the AMA Manual of Style and features quizzes, interviews, and ruminations on style, usage, and punctuation. Brought to you by The JAMA Network.