|"Ethics, copyright laws, and courtesy to readers require authors to identify the sources of direct quotations and of any facts or opinions not generally known or easily checked."--|
Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition (Chicago: Chicago Univ. Press), p. 594
Why cite sources?
Whenever you quote or base your ideas on another person's work, you must document the source you used. Even when you do not quote directly from another work, if reading that source contributed to the ideas presented in your paper, you must give the authors proper credit.
Citations allow readers to locate and further explore the sources you consulted, show the depth and scope of your research, and give credit to authors for their ideas. Citations provide evidence for your arguments and add credibility to your work by demonstrating that you have sought out and considered a variety of resources. In written academic work, citing sources is standard practice and shows that you are responding to this person, agreeing with that person, and adding something of your own. Think of documenting your sources as providing a trail for your reader to follow to see the research you performed and discover what led you to your original contribution.
If you and 4-5 other students want a workshop on Zotero let me know -- we'll try and find a time that works for everyone! Or if you like to work it through at your own pace, checkout this online tutorial!
Go to http://www.zotero.org
Pro-tip: Use Zotero Standalone which means you have to download the software to your computer.