How to Cite Bullet Quotes in a Research Paper

A research paper presents an original thought and supports that thought with solid factual research. A bullet list from a credible source is one way to support an original thought, but properly formatting the quotation in the paper is tricky. Proper quotation and citation is important in research papers in order to avoid plagiarism. No exact rules are given in reference books to cite a bullet list. In this instance, interpret general instructions for formatting long quotations to properly format a bullet list.

Write a phrase introducing the author and date of publication immediately before the bullet list. End the phrase with a colon. For example, "Smith (2011) lists the symptoms of grammar-phobia:" properly introduces a long quote. Bullet lists can look like your own writing, even when they are indented. Name the author first to avoid plagiarism issues.

Skip a line. Tab once and type the bullet. Tab again and type text exactly as it is written, including all punctuation. Text that runs over to the next line should begin immediately under the text above it, not under the bullet. Continue in this format until the list is complete.

Place the parenthetical citation immediately following the last punctuation mark or, if there is no punctuation mark, after the last word of the list. This includes an open parenthesis, a page number or numbers and a close parenthesis. For example, type (p. 123) or (pp. 123-128).

Highlight the entire list and make the font one or two sizes smaller. Remember, the main idea is to avoid plagiarism conflicts, so a smaller font establishes a defined separation between original writing and quoted material. Hit "Return" to begin the next line of original text at the regular margin.

Show the quotation to the teacher before the due date.

Quotations should support original ideas.

Bullet lists longer than three to five items add too much quoted material.

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