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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Student Life and Culture Archival Program: Citation Guide and More

Archives designed to record student culture at the University of Illinois.

Contact us

Ellen Swain, Archivist for Student Life and Culture
Archives Research Center
Phone: 333-7841

Student Life and Culture Archives web site:

Archives Database

Click to access Archon.

Citation Guide

Citation Guide:

Recommended Footnote Citations of Material in the University of Illinois Archives

Because archival material is not indexed by subject, author or title, use of the record series and box numbers is necessary for the location of material cited.

Material in the University Archives which may be found in other places (e.g., publications) should be cited in the usual form, i.e.

            The Daily Illini, (February 8, 1938), p. 3.

            Illio, (1957), p. 58.

            Illinois Alumni News, (July, 1938), 16:10, pp. 6-8.

Where most of the sources are in the University Archives, the initial citation may state, "All sources are located in the University of Illinois Archives, unless otherwise noted."  Record series numbers and boxes may then be cited in a short form, e.g. RS 15/13/1-3.

If a bibliography is included, full citations with record series and box numbers should be used.

For examples of citing specific kinds of material take a look at the full "Citation Guide."

Conducting Historical Research

 "First, students must find a historical problem worth addressing. This is done most often by reading and comparing secondary history sources, such as monographs and journal articles. Simply finding relevant secondary materials requires its own particular set of skills in using the library: searching catalogs, accessing on-line databases, using interlibrary loan, and even knowing how to pose questions to reference librarians. Reading these sources, determining their arguments, and putting them in conversation with each other constitute another broad set of skills which are enormously difficult to master.

Second, having developed a historical problem, students must find a set of primary historical sources which can actually address the question they have formulated.

Finally, students must put all this information together and actually produce knowledge. They must craft a paper wherein they pose a clear historical problem and then offer a thesis addressing it. In a well-structured, grammatically correct essay, they must work their way through an argument without falling into common historical fallacies. They must match evidence to argument, subordinate little ideas to big ones, and anticipate and pre-empt challenges to their argument."