Ethics and Documentation交际伦理与文献引证
The word ethic means moral custom—beliefs about good or bad behavior. Ethics can refer to
individual standards of behavior, standards of a particular group, or universal standards. In this chapter, ethic specifically refers to the standard governing the conduct for a particular group—those
who communicate technical information.
Documentation means supporting statements in a book or article with in-text citations and reference lists. 使用引证和和参考文献表来支持文中的陈述。If you write for publication, you
will be required to document your sources. Writers acknowledge their sources in order to increase their credibility and avoid plagiarism. They document their sources as a service to the reader by providing the information that allows the reader to locate the original source of the information cited.
I. Intellectual Property and Ethics知识产权与伦理
In writing you must respect the intellectual property of others and give complete credit to those whose information you use. Failing to acknowledge the ideas of others is unethical; publishing the ideas of others as your own is illegal. 在写作中要尊重他人的知识产权：并对引用的信息说明材
Therefore, you must document the sources of all ideas or expressions that are neither your own nor common knowledge.
However, it is often difficult to distinguish just what is common knowledge and what is not. Common knowledge refers to facts and ideas that are widely known and available from a number of sources. Read the following examples and tell which expresses common knowledge and which should be documented.
1) The Mars is the fourth planet from the sun.
2) The Mars has a sidereal period 恒星周期of revolution around the sun of 687 days at a
mean distance平均距离 of 227.8 million kilometers and a mean diameter二次平均直径
of approximately 6,726 kilometers.
3) There are living organisms on the Mars.
The first two sentences are common knowledge because they are generally recognized knowledge that can be found in common textbooks, dictionaries and encyclopedias. However, because there is some disagreement over whether there are really living organisms on the Mars, the third statement should be documented.
One popular problem now is the widespread availability of information on the Internet. Information gets passed around very quickly through the World Wide Web. You should avoid the temptation to simply download information from the Internet and use it, without giving credit. Even if you don‟t know whom to give credit to, you should at least cite the source.
II. Incorporating Source Material in Your Writing把原始资料引入文章
In technical writing you may frequently use the ideas you have learned from others through your reading. Reporting the results of reading can be as important as the research itself. Generally there are three methods of reporting the results of your reading.
• Quotation: using the author‟s exact words
• Paraphrase: putting the ideas into your own words
• Summary: condensing the ideas into a shorter passage
Quotations are direct citations from the previous works of others or your own. Quotations are accurate, but they can be lengthy and difficult to understand. In general, you should only use direct citations when you cannot say the same thing more clearly or more concisely than the original, or when the original language is so distinctive that you would lose something in a paraphrase or a summary.
Quotations are introduced and closed with double quotation marks. For clarity, you should incorporate quotations into the text as much as possible:
Stickle et al. reported that “the patients who received nifedipine were about half as likely to
need an aortic-valve replacement as those who took digoxin over the next five years” (1996).
To indicate a quotation within a quotation, use single quotation marks:
The Medical Quarterly reported that “Taylor found „spirochete-like elements‟ in skin-biopsy
specimens of erythema chronicum migrans.”《医学季刊》报告说：“泰勒发现在慢性游走性
Use ellipses省略号 to indicate omitted material. If the omission occurs within a sentence, use three periods with a space before and after each period to indicate omitted material: 如果省略出现在句
The disaster of the space shuttle Challenger in 1986, which killed all seven astronauts on board,
is regarded as the most disastrous space-traveling accident in history.
“The disaster of the space shuttle Challenger in 1986 . . . is regarded as the most disastrous
space-traveling accident in history.”
You can use brackets to clarify something in the original that might not be clear to the reader. For example, since the reader might not know what the pronoun “it” refers to in the following
citation, the writer has added the reference in brackets:
Taylor claims that, “Indeed, if it [the virus] exists, it may be much shorter lived in animals than
in human beings.”
You can also use brackets to show that an error in the text appears in the original. The most common way of indicating an error in a quotation which is not the writer‟s mistake is to place “sic” (Latin for
“thus” or “so”) within brackets:
“The epidemic is nondiscriminating, as it effects [sic] both sexes and all ages.” ；此处本应该
If the quoted material is lengthy, you should set it off as an indented block缩排的信息块.
There is little agreement among technical writing as to exactly what “lengthy” means and just how many spaces to indent. A general rule to follow is that if the quoted material runs longer than four lines, you‟d better indent the passage five spaces with single space between the lines. Do not enclose the passage in quotation marks but set it in italics.
We think they (Chinese colleagues) need to continue along this line (teaching vocabulary) but
we also think they should make additional efforts in a somewhat different direction. For
example, they could take advantage of the current ESP courses to introduce rhetorical issues,
such as audience, purpose, information selection, and page layout. When both instructors and
students feel more comfortable, other rhetorical issues may be introduced. (Ding & Jablonski,
2001, p. 432)
Be careful when you copy information, and double-check when you edit. If you spell a source‟s
name wrong, if you write the wrong date, if you transpose numbers, or if you inadvertently give the wrong page number in your documentation, that error might well cause a reader to question all your facts.
Paraphrase means to restate the ideas of others in a more easily understood form. Generally, a paraphrase is about the same length as the original passage, and is used when a writer wants to include many of the details in the original:
The instability of the heavy elements relative to those of mass number around 60, as is shown
by the binding energy curve, suggests the possibility of spontaneous decomposition of the
heavy elements into fragments of approximately half size.
The binding energy curve shows that heavy elements are less stable than those of mass number
around 60. This suggests that the heavy elements can possibly split up by themselves into parts
of about half size.
The original is a long sentence with complex structures, including nominalization and too many modifiers. The paraphrase simplifies the structure by dividing the original into two sentences, and converting nominalization (instability, possibility, decomposition) into verbs or adjectives (less stable, possibly, split up). Thus the meaning of the passage becomes clearer and easier to understand.
A summary also retells the idea of the original but is much briefer than the original. It reflects the language and tone of the original, and is used when the writer does not want to include many details in the original. The following is an example of a summary.
Laser light is very different from ordinary light. The light from a flashlight, for example, is
incoherent, that is, it travels in all directions. Laser light is coherent, which is to say that the
outer edges of the beam are almost perfectly parallel to each other. A laser beam one-half inch
in diameter will diverge to become only three inches in diameter after traveling more than one
mile; or, to look at it another way, that half inch beam, if fired from the earth to the moon,
would illuminate an area on the lunar surface only slightly greater than one mile in diameter. By
focusing the laser beam through a lens system, even smaller areas of coverage can be achieved.
Laser light, in addition to being coherent, is also monochromatic. Ordinary light is
polychromatic, which means it consists of all light frequencies ranging from infrared to
ultraviolet. Laser light normally consists of only one frequency or at most a few frequencies.
Laser light is different from ordinary light in that laser light is a kind of parallel light which
consists of only one color or one frequency, whereas ordinary light is a kind of unparallel light
which consists of all colors or all light frequencies.
Summary is the most frequently used form for reporting the results of your reading. In writing summaries you should make complex ideas more easily understandable by using more familiar language. You need to combine information from several sources in the same summary section, rearrange the material, and delete the material that is not important to your writing.
Guidelines for Incorporating Source Material 4.
• If your readers are experts, you will not have to define many terms or offer many
paraphrases. A direct quotation may be necessary.
• If your material is highly technical and your readers are novices, they will likely need
summaries and paraphrases that they can understand.
• If readers are concerned primarily in getting a general understanding of the material than
in absorbing details, you may use more summary than paraphrase.
• If readers are looking for information to help them make a decision, they will likely be
looking for summaries that will help them make those decisions.
• If your readers are looking for detailed information, you will likely include a lot of details
in your paraphrases.
• Faithfully reproduce every detail from the original.
• Integrate the quotation into the text so that the reader can follow the text easily.
• Quote only what is necessary, only what must be quoted.
Paraphrase and Summary
• Understand your audience clearly so that you maintain an appropriate level of diction and
determine whether terms you are using from the source need to be defined.
• Avoid wordiness, needless repetition, and redundancy, which waste the reader‟s time and
interfere with the clear communication of ideas.
• If you are paraphrasing, convey the correct sense of the original by including many of the
details from the original, do not leave out any information whose omission would
significantly alter the message.
• If you are summarizing, convey accurately the sense of the original but do not include
many details from the original.
III. Documenting Your Sources引证资料来源
After incorporating information in your writing, you must document the sources of all quotations, paraphrases, and summaries. Documentation has three important functions. Firstly, it gives credit to those whose information you have used and failing to give complete credit is plagiarism. 说明你引
用信息材料的来源：对此未加说明则被认为是抄袭。Secondly, it establishes authority and
credibility of your work by displaying the scope and depth of your research.第二：引证通过显示你
研究的范围和深度以建立你研究的权威性和可靠性。 It shows readers where you got the
information, how recent your information is, and who the writers are. Thirdly, it allows readers to examine your sources in detail. If readers want to know more about a specific reference they can find that book or article according to your documentation.
Basically, there are three forms of documentation: footnotes, endnotes, and in-text citations脚
注、尾注和夹注. We will mainly discuss the in-text citation in this chapter, because it has become the standard form of documentation.
1. In-Text Citations and Reference Lists夹注和参考文献表
An in-text citation is a brief notation in the text that identifies the source and at the same time provides a cross-reference to the reference list at the end of the document. 夹注是对文章中信息来
源的简单注释：它同时对文件结尾的参考文献表提供相互参照。The reference list is a directory
of information about all the sources in the document. It provides an address for each reference in your paper. The reference list is generally arranged alphabetically and includes the following basic
; For books: author(s), title, publisher, date, and place of publication.
; For periodicals: author(s), title of article, name of journal, issue or volume number, and
Different disciplines and journals may require slightly different forms of documentation. Therefore, you should always check the requirements of the organization or the journal for which you are writing, and then turn to the appropriate style manual for the details and examples.
2. APA Style for In-Text Citations
One of the popular styles for in-text citation is the APA Style (the American Psychological Association 1994). It uses the author-year method of citation; that is, the author‟s name and the year
of publication appear in parentheses separated by a comma:
Digoxin has side effects in treating patients with aortic regurgitation (Taylor, 1995). 地高辛对
If you are including a direct quotation, give the page number of the source as well as the author and year. Note that each part of the reference is separated by commas, and the page reference begins with “p.” followed by a single space:
Digoxin has “side effects in treating patients with aortic regurgitation” (Taylor, 1995, p. 12).
If you have just mentioned the author in the text, it is sufficient to just note the year of publication (and page if applicable):
Taylor (1995, p. 12) claims that digoxin has “side effects in treating patients with aortic
If you don‟t know the author of a work, use an abbreviated version of the title. Use double quotation marks around the title of an article, or underline the title of the periodical or book:
Digoxin has side effects in treating patients with aortic regurgitation (“Aortic Regurgitation,”
If you want to include some of your source information in the main part of your sentence, insert only the author in the sentence. Avoid including either only the year or both the author and the year in the sentence:
In 1995, it was claimed that digoxin has side effects in treating patients with aortic regurgitation
In 1995, Taylor claimed that digoxin has side effects in treating patients with aortic
Taylor claimed that digoxin has side effects in treating patients with aortic regurgitation (1995).
If there are fewer than six authors, cite all of them the first time, and only the first author plus “et al.”
FIRST OCCURRENCE: (Taylor, Nicholson, Moore, & Clinton, 1996)
SUCCEEDING OCCURRENCES: (Taylor et al., 1996)
If there are more than five authors, name the first and add “et al.” even for the first time to indicate that there are additional authors:
(Smith et al., 1997)
If the author and the year are the same for two or more references, add lowercase letters (in alphabetical succession) after the year:
If the reference list includes publications by two or more authors with the same surname, include the authors‟ initials in all citations, even if the year is not the same:
(F.E. Taylor, 1995)
3. APA Style for Reference Lists
The basic publication information for book citations in a reference list is slightly different from that of periodical citations, which will be discussed respectively in this part.
Book Citations. The general form for book citations includes the following items in order.
1) Author: Place the last mane first, followed by a comma and initials for all authors. Put a
comma after each author, with an ampersand (&) before the last author‟s name. End the
list of authors with a period.
2) Year of Publication: Place the year of publication in parentheses, followed by a period.
3) Book Title: Underline, i.e. italicize the title with only the first word and any proper names
capitalized, followed by a period.
4) Place of Publication: Include only the city, unless the city is not well known or unless the
city could be confused with another location. Separate place and publisher with a colon.
5) Publisher: Give the name of the publisher in as brief a form as possible. Spell out names
of associations and presses, but omit terms that are not needed to identify the publisher,
such as “Co.,” “Inc.,” and “Assoc.” Follow the name with a period.
The following examples illustrate some of the most frequently used forms for book citations:
BOOK WITH ONE AUTHOR. Invert the author‟s name, use commas to separate surnames and initials, and finish each element with a period:
Munby, J. (1978). Communicative Syllabus Design. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
BOOK WITH MORE THAN ONE AUTHOR. Include all authors‟ names, regardless of the number of
authors. Use commas to separate authors, and use an ampersand (&) before the last author:
Hargis, G., Carey, M., Hernandez, A. K., Hughes, P., Longo, D., Rouiller, S., & Wilde, E.
(2004). Developing quality technical information, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
LATER EDITION OF A BOOK. Add the edition in parentheses after the title of the book:
Pickett, N. A., & Laster, A. A. (1996). Technical English (7th ed.). New York: Harper Collins.
EDITED BOOK. Add “Ed.” Or “Eds.” in parentheses after the name(s) of the editor(s):
Wang, L. M. (Ed.). (1993). Encyclopedia of traditional Chinese medicine. Beijing: Science
ARTICLE OR CHAPTER IN AN EDITED BOOK. Give the author(s) and title of the work you are citing
first, and then provide information about the book that contains the work. In the following example, note that the editor‟s name is given with first initials before the last name, the word “In” is added before the name of the editors, and the actual page numbers of the work cited are included in parentheses:
Wilkins, D. A. (1979). Grammatical, situational and notional syllabuses. In C. J. Brumfit & K.
Johnson (Eds.), The communicative approach to language teaching (pp. 82-90). Oxford:
Oxford University Press.
BOOK WITH NO AUTHOR OR EDITOR. If there is no author or editor, list the book under the title. In the reference list, alphabetize books with no author or editor by the first significant word in the title:
Effective technical writing. (2001). Miami: Nicholson Software.
Periodical Citations. The general form for journal article citations in a reference list includes the following items in order.
1) Author: Place the last mane first and follow by a comma and initials for all authors. Put a
comma after each author, with an ampersand (&) before the last author‟s name. Follow the
list of authors with a period.
2) Year of Publication: Place the year of publication in parentheses and follow by a period.
3) Article Title. Capitalize only the first word of the title. Do not underline or use quotation
marks around the title. Follow by a period.
4) Journal Title. Give the journal title in full. Underline (i.e. italicize) the title, and capitalize
the notional words in it. Follow by a comma.
5) Volume Number. Underline the volume number and follow by a comma. Do not use “V,”
“Vol.,” or “Volume” before the volume number. If each issue of the periodical begins on
page 1, give the issue number (in parentheses) after the volume number.
6) Page Numbers. Give inclusive page numbers of the article. Do not precede the page
numbers with “p.” or “pp.” for journal articles. Use “p.” or “pp.” before page numbers of
newspapers and magazines. Follow the page number(s) with a period.
The following examples illustrate some of the most frequently used forms for periodical citations.
JOURNAL ARTICLE WITH ONE AUTHOR. Invert the author‟s name, use commas to separate surnames
and initials. Follow the above instruction and finish with a period:
Wiles, D. (2003). Single sourcing and Chinese culture: A perspective on skills development
within Western organizations and the People‟s Republic of China；信息资源的一体化应用和
中国文化；对西方组织和中国在技能发展方面的看法，. Technical Communication, 50,
JOURNAL ARTICLE WITH MORE THAN ONE AUTHOR. Include all authors‟ names, regardless of the
number of authors. Use commas to separate authors, and use an ampersand (&) before the last author:
Allen, J. P. B. & Widdowson, H. G.. (1974). Teaching the communicative use of English.
International Review of Applied Linguistics 12 (1): 1-21.
MAGAZINE OR NEWSPAPER ARTICLE. Give the complete date instead of the volume number. Note that the date is given with the year followed by month and day. The page numbers are preceded by “p.” or “pp.”:
Fonseca, D. (2006, February 5). Simplified technical English. Intercom, pp. 20-22.
ARTICLE WITHOUT AUTHOR. Give the title of the article with only the first word capitalized. Place the year and date of publication in parentheses and separate them with a comma. Underline the name of the periodical (magazine, or newspaper), and precede the page number(s) with “p.” or “pp.”:
Seven steps of online help writing. (2004, May 12). Technical Writing Journal, p. 24.
Electronic Sources. The general form for citing electronic sources has the following parts:
1. Author: Place the last mane first, followed by a comma and initials for all authors. Put a
comma after each author, with an ampersand (&) before the last author‟s name. End the list
of authors with a period.
2. Year of Publication: Place the year of publication in parentheses, followed by a period. If
there is no date, include the date of the search.
3. Title of Article or Chapter. Capitalize only the first word of the title. Do not underline or
use quotation marks around the title. Follow by a period.
4. Title of Full Work. Underline, i.e. italicize the title with only the first word and any proper
names capitalized, followed by a period.
5. Type of Medium. Insert the method of publication in brackets (e.g., [Online], [CD-ROM]).
6. “Available.” Use “Available” to replace “Place of Publication” and “Publisher”
immediately after the type of medium.
7. Path. Provide the specific method the reader can use to find the material (e.g.,
The following examples illustrate some of the most frequently used forms for electronic sources:
Bass, R. (1997). Technology & learning. A brief guide to interactive multimedia and the study
of the United States. [On-line]. Available:
The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (2006,15 Aug.). Abstract.
Special writing assignments [On-line]. Available:
Kemble, E. (2001). Guidelines for technical communication [CD-ROM]. Jonathan Data Bank.
Southampton: Jonathan [Producer and Distributor].
Nicholson, M. (2003, July). Nutrition of soy foods. E-mail to the author.
4. Number System
Some journals require writers to use a number system instead of the name-and-year system for in-text citations and the reference list. In the number system, a number is inserted in parentheses instead of a name and year in the in-text citation, such as (1) or (2). This number in the text corresponds to a numbered entry in the reference list. In some number systems, the page number is also given, which is separated from the reference number by a comma, such as (1, 24).
There are generally two number systems. In one system, the in-text citations are numbered according to their sequence of appearance in the text. The number of citation in the text corresponds to the number of entry in the reference list: the first citation is the first entry; the second citation is the second entry, and so on. For this method, the references are not listed alphabetically, but numerically according to the sequence in which they appear in the text.
1. Wiles, D. (2003). Single sourcing and Chinese culture: A perspective on skills development