Why are citation and referencing so important in academic writing?

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Citation and referencing have the following functions: • Lending 'authority': citing the ideas and opinions of others, who have discussed or written about similar issues, lends 'authority' to your work i.e. by establishing that you have read broadly, that you are familiar with the research in the area and are therefore 'qualified' to contribute to the academic debate. • Offering scope and contrast: citation allows you to present a range of arguments in relation to a subject area, to compare and contrast differing positions, and to give a context to your own. • Providing evidence: citation allows you to present evidence to support the arguments you put forward and the conclusions you reach. • Allowing reader to locate and verify: Accurate referencing enables your reader to follow-up the material to which you refer, either for the purpose of verification, or simply to research more fully. • Avoiding plagiarism: accurate referencing consistently and accurately allows you to utilise and ... more
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