Sunday, September 9, 2018

Citation and References

During the early days of my career as instructor,  I did not pay much attention to the concepts of copyright and licenses. However, I realized that an understanding of these concepts is important to prevent complications in the future. (See previous post)

Side note:
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Copyright - safeguards the ownership of an intellectual property
License - document that lets someone use the intellectual property
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Now, as an assistant professor, I need to prepare materials for teaching and research which include the following:
  • course syllabus
  • course website
  • handouts
  • exams
  • quizzes
  • presentations
  • research papers
  • programs/software
  • blog
  • grant proposals
  • audio/video
  • figures/photos
  • letters
  • computer programs
In preparing these, I use resources that are published online, either by their authors or by third party publishers. These resources are by default copyrighted and thus permission from the authors should be obtained first. However, obtaining permissions may be a tedious task, thus authors indicate the license (such as Creative Commons) to these materials. At the least, authors of these materials should be properly acknowledged.

For research papers and grant proposals, there is usually a standard to follow. In my field, which is Computer Science, the ACM Citation Styles and Reference Formats [1] is widely used. This guideline can also be applied in course websites, course syllabus, blogs, and handouts. A "References" section is placed at the end of these materials which contains the list of other materials cited. In presentations, borrowed images and pictures must also be cited. At the minimum, the following information are needed for a reference entry (d-a-t-u):
  • date/year of publication
  • author/publisher (can be a person, organization, legal entity)
  • title/type  
  • url/source

Examples:

[1] Joseph Anthony C. Hermocilla. 2018. CMSC 137: Data Communicatons and Networking (First Sem 2018-2019).  Retrieved September 9, 2018 from https://jachermocilla.org/teaching/137/2018-1/.
 
[2] McMillan, T. 2009. Fantail vector [JPG Image]. Retrieved September 9, 2018 from http://www.kiwiwise.co.nz/photo/fantail-vector.

[3] Marie Betel B. de Robles, Joseph Anthony C. Hermocilla, and Miyah D. Queliste. 2017. Buffer Overflow Exploitation on 64-bit Linux Systems [Google Slides Presentation]. Retrieved September 9, 2018 from http://srg.ics.uplb.edu.ph/resources/presentations.

[4] Joseph Anthony C. Hermocilla. 2018. Homework 3: Environment  Variables, Processes, and Threads [PDF Handout]. Retrieved September 9, 2018 from https://jachermocilla.org/teaching/125/2017-2/hw3.pdf

[5] Joseph Anthony C. Hermocilla. 2018. Homework 3: Environment  Variables, Processes, and Threads [Printed Handout].


Some authors find it cumbersome to cite because the information needed are not readily available. It seems that the best way then is to provide a "Reference as:" or "Citation:" element or section in your own materials which include the minimum information, d-a-t-u, above.

References:
  • [1]ACM, Inc. 2018. Citation Styles and Reference Formats. Retrieved September 9, 2018 from https://www.acm.org/publications/authors/reference-formatting.