Consider these questions:
- I paraphrased everything, so why do I need to use parenthetical references or notes?
- If I include all of the sources I consulted in my bibliography, isn't that sufficient?
- I didn't know anything about my subject when I started. If I provide a reference for everything I learned, my paper will be very hard to read. You don't want it to be that full of citations to do you?
- I found some of the same information in several sources--in that case the information is common knowledge, isn't it?
HINT: Only the information found in most reference collections (e.g., encyclopedias and dictionaries) are considered common knowledge. This type of information includes dates of significance such as the signing of the Declaration of Independence (August 2, 1776) or the Bombing of the World Trade Center (September 11, 2001) (Procter).
All information used from a source should be documented using a parenthetical reference or a note. These references or notes should be supported by an entry in the "Works Cited" or "Bibliography."
Representing someone else's ideas as your own is just as illegal as stealing something from a store.
Ideas can't be held in our hands, but they are still property--intellectual property.