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Faculty Attribution Guidelines

Websites | Online Journal Articles | Blogs | Cartoons & Images | E-Mail | Other Faculty Presentations | Copyright | How To Cite on a PowerPoint slide? | What about unknown material? | For More Information

There are minimum requirements recognized throughout academia on the proper use of citations in the classroom setting. This is especially true for many of the non-traditional resources found today such as web pages, wikis, blogs, e-mails and other faculty presentations. Use the resources on this page as a guide when citing materials used in PowerPoint presentations, BLS Vista learning modules and class handouts. Please note that proper citing of a source does NOT equal permission to use copyright restricted materials.


When citing websites, make certain to at least document the page or site author, title, the date accessed and the URL or web address.

  • Author: The author can be an individual or a group. If not found on a specific page, try to find the site's home page. Often, the name of the responsible person or party will be found at the bottom of this page. Or, look for a portion of the site that says "About Us."
  • Title: The title of a web page will most often be found in the very top, left-hand portion of a web page (often blue with white lettering).
  • Date Accessed: If you are creating your citation from a print-out of a web page, the date accessed will be shown on the bottom right-hand corner of the page.
  • URL: The easiest way to cite a URL (web site address) is to
    1. "select" the address in the location box at the top of the web page
    2. "copy" it (using Ctrl+C on your keyboard)
    3. "paste" it in your citation. TIP: If the URL is very long, create a "Tiny URL" at this site http://tinyurl.com. Tiny URL can turn this address http://www.umassmed.edu/department_and_centers/dept_centers. aspx?linkidentifier=id&itemid=30846 into this http://tinyurl.com/57t2fk.


APA Style
Lamar Soutter Library, U Mass Medical School. (2008). Lamar Soutter Library - University of Massachusetts Medical School. Retrieved August 15, 2008, from http://library.umassmed.edu/index.cfm

MLA Style
Lamar Soutter Library, U Mass Medical School. "Lamar Soutter Library - University of Massachusetts Medical School." 2008. .

Online Journal Articles

Online journal articles should be cited in the same manner as a traditional print article. The exception is that a link to the resource should be added to the resource, either as a DOI (Digital Object Identifier - retrievable through www.doi.org) or URL as shown in the below examples.


APA Style
Hatem D., Mazor K., Fischer M., Philbin M., & Quirk M. (2008). Applying patient perspectives on caring to curriculum development. Patient Education and Counseling, 72(3), 367-367-73. doi:10.1016/j.pec.2008.05.020

MLA Style
Hatem D., et al. "Applying Patient Perspectives on Caring to Curriculum Development." Patient Education and Counseling 72.3 (2008): 367,367-73. .


Weblogs or "blogs" are one of the newer types of online media to require a citation style. And, in the case of blogs, the accepted style can be very different between formats. Note how APA requires the blog URL to be displayed. MLA does not but it DOES require the date accessed.


APA Style
Levin, L. L., & Comes, J. F. (2008). U Mass Family Medicine - library corner. Message posted to http://familymedlibrarycorner.blogspot.com/

MLA Style
Levin, Leonard L., and James F. Comes. U Mass Family Medicine - Library Corner, 2008. September 23, 2008.

Cartoons & Images

One of the best ways in which to get across a point in a lecture is by using humor, often in the form of a cartoon, as part of a lecture presentation. Cartoons are often left un-referenced in a presentation but require citations just as in the resources above. The same holds true for any image, whether the reproduction of a drawing, painting, photograph, etc.


Cartoon example


A major difference in citing an e-mail communication versus the above is that it is impractical as well as impossible to include a link to a source that is and remains private and password restricted. As a result, e-mail citations are much shorter and un-informative than other electronic citations. Also, it is standard protocol to ask the senders permission to publish information sent in this fashion. However, if information was received via e-mail and is used in a presentation or publication, it is essential to cite it as below.


APA Style
J.F. Comes, personal communication, September 23, 2008.

MLA Style
Comes, James F. "Re: Fitchburg Resident Training." Email to Len Levin. 23 Sep. 2008.

Other Faculty Presentations

Citing lecture material and/or PowerPoint presentations delivered during an academic lecture is the least standard style of citation. What is important to capture is

  1. the title of the lecture or PowerPoint presentation,
  2. the faculty member that delivered the presentation,
  3. the date the presentation was given, and
  4. the location
  5. .

These are all guideposts that a user can employ if they need to discover additional information about the cited source.


Cells of the CNS: Structure and Function. A PowerPoint presentation delivered by Sue Gagliardi, March 24, 2006, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA.

UMMS now holds an annual license with the Copyright Clearance Center making it easier than ever to search permissions for materials used in presentations and handouts. Simply use the link below to enter "Annual License - Academic" and search for the source you are using by title, ISBN/ISSN or publisher. (Please note: While the CCC license covers thousands of publications, it does not include everything. Payment of a fee may be required to use an article or image. Please contact the LSL for assistance.)

How To Cite on a PowerPoint slide?

When creating citations within a PowerPoint, it's always best to

  1. add a citation on a slide where non-original material exists, and
  2. include an end slide as a bibliography.

This assists both the user that may find the individual slide and the user that has downloaded an entire presentation.

Slide example

In this case, the two citations fill up a great deal of space on the slide. As this is often the norm, the standard for attribution should be as on the slide below, as long as you add the full citation at the end of the presentation.

Slide example Slide example

What about unknown material?

There will always be cases where you need to/want to use an image, quotation or other reference and its original source is unknown. While you really should not use something that you can not attribute to an original source, this doesn't mean that you should automatically set it aside and not use it. Try Googling it - maybe you can find the source again using keywords, title words or any other "clues" from the material. If this does not work and you really feel that your presentation would be lessened by leaving the material out, simply cite as much as you know. For example, if you have a cartoon that you think was in Harper's Magazine (as in the example above) but can not remember or find the artist, date or any other information, cite it as such:


Harper's Magazine cartoon? [Source and date unknown].

For More Information

For more information on proper citation formats, consult the following resources: