Why are citations important in science? 

Citing sources in research articles is a critical aspect of the scientific process and is essential in academic research. The importance of it is instilled in every student all over the world, and so are the dramatic consequences of not doing it – especially getting caught not doing it. 

So, why are citations important in science?

There are several reasons why citing literature, sources, etc, is essential, and they are not all about giving credit where it is due. For students, establishing credibility is the most important aspect. By citing sources, researchers and students demonstrate that they have conducted a thorough review of the literature and have based their findings on reputable and credible sources. This adds credibility and legitimacy to their research/studies and helps to establish the trustworthiness of their conclusions.

Giving the appropriate researchers credit is of course a major part of why everyone cites so vigorously in research articles. Citing sources allows researchers to give credit to other authors and researchers whose work has influenced or contributed to their own. This not only acknowledges the work of others but also helps to build a sense of community within the scientific field.

Plagiarism can ruin all traces of academic credibility, and it is a serious offense in academic and scientific communities and can have severe consequences for the researcher. Citing sources helps to avoid plagiarism by clearly identifying and acknowledging the sources used in the research.

Why are citations important in science?
college students doing homework research data together.

Citing is also important for supporting the scientific record. Citing sources is important because it helps to create a comprehensive and accurate record of scientific knowledge. This allows other researchers to build upon the work of others and helps to advance the field as a whole.

One of the big, sometimes neglected, aspects of citing, is that citing facilitates the replication process. As everyone knows, it is not science if it cannot be replicated. As important as citing sources to help others to replicate and build upon research, equally essential is the citing of the software and hardware used to conduct the research. This is essential for the advancement of science, as replication is a key component of the scientific process and helps to validate or disprove findings.

At iMotions, we encourage all of our users to cite all of our guides, brochures, and printed materials when used in the making of a research article. We also strongly advise everyone to cite the software as it is integral in allowing other researchers to know how you came to our results and what tools you used to arrive at your conclusions. 

How to cite iMotions 

“Software should be cited on the same basis as any other research product such as a paper or a book; that is, authors should cite the appropriate set of software products just as they cite the appropriate set of papers”

(Katz et al., 2020)

In light of the above quote, we encourage you to cite the use of iMotions where appropriate.

When citing iMotions in peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, conference papers, or presentations, please use the following notation:

iMotions (9.3), iMotions A/S, Copenhagen, Denmark, (2022).

iMotions. 9.3, iMotions A/S, 2022.

2022.iMotions. Copenhagen, Denmark: iMotions A/S.

iMotions, version 9.3 (Copenhagen, Denmark: iMotions A/S, 2022)

Note: adjust the version and year where relevant.

How to cite any of the White Papers or Pocket Guides

If you are using any information from the White Papers or Pocket Guides available on our website, please use the following notation:

iMotions (2022). Galvanic Skin Response: The Complete Pocket Guide. Retrieved from https://imotions.com/guides/ on [MM/DD/YYYY].

Note: adjust the title, year, and date accessed where relevant.


Katz DS, Chue Hong NP, Clark Tet al.Recognizing the value of software: a software citation guide [version 2; peer review: 2 approved]. F1000Research 2021,9:1257 (https://doi.org/10.12688/f1000research.26932.2)

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For Beginners and Intermediates

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  • Respondent management with groups and populations
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