The Student Room Group

Is it okay to write in-text citations in your introduction for an essay?

I want to start an essay by defining some terms such as 'social revolution', but to do that, I want to use the definition used by most social scientists written by this popular scholar. I know I should reference them but is it really okay to do so in the intro? I've heard contrasting opinions on this matter so I'm not sure what I can and cannot do.
Claims and definitions should always be backed up. Although, common knowledge does not need to be referenced. But to play it safe, assume all knowledge is uncommon. Just to be clear, it is unlikely many people know what 'social revolution' is.
(edited 5 months ago)
Reply 2
Of course you can do in-text citations in the introduction - if you are stating facts that need to be sourced, quoting someone, or using concepts taken from the literature. This also signals to the marker good attention to detail - just make sure to maintain the use of in-text citations throughout the essay.
Original post by Nice_100
I want to start an essay by defining some terms such as 'social revolution', but to do that, I want to use the definition used by most social scientists written by this popular scholar. I know I should reference them but is it really okay to do so in the intro? I've heard contrasting opinions on this matter so I'm not sure what I can and cannot do.

Hi @Nice_100,

It is good practice to back up what you are saying in an essay, including definitions. This is especially important if it is not common knowledge as @random_matt mentioned.

It is always best to speak to a tutor/advisor at the university to double check so you can be reassured of what is expected from you.

I hope this helps and good luck with the rest of the essay!

Alia
University of Kent Student Rep
(edited 5 months ago)
Original post by Nice_100
I want to start an essay by defining some terms such as 'social revolution', but to do that, I want to use the definition used by most social scientists written by this popular scholar. I know I should reference them but is it really okay to do so in the intro? I've heard contrasting opinions on this matter so I'm not sure what I can and cannot do.

I hadn't heard of referencing stuff in the intro being an issue. I think it's perfectly fine and reasonable to reference things in the intro, even if it's common knowledge - I read a paper once and the intro started with "Humans are social beings"... the paper had a flipping reference for that, which is just one of the most widely known and uncontested facts out there. So yeah. Reference everything. You don't want to accidentally end up being investigated by plagiarism!
Original post by Nice_100
I want to start an essay by defining some terms such as 'social revolution', but to do that, I want to use the definition used by most social scientists written by this popular scholar. I know I should reference them but is it really okay to do so in the intro? I've heard contrasting opinions on this matter so I'm not sure what I can and cannot do.

Hiya!

It's a good question, I have not heard anyone oppose referencing in the introduction before if anything I have been more than encouraged to reference in the introduction to set a good example that you have done extensive reading to support your essay. As Alia said from University of Kent, if you have any questions in regards of referencing you can always get in contact with your lecturer and I am sure they will be happy to help. I am currently in the middle of writing my essay during this winter break and a helpful website I use in regards of referencing is cite them right (just incase you haven't been told about this before)

Happy writing, I am sure it will be over soon aha
-Maddie second year Health and well-being in society student at De Montfort University

Quick Reply

Latest

Trending

Trending