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CJLS: VOL. 10, NO. 1, JUNE 2022

A Cross-Disciplinary Study of Citation Types in the Literature Review Section of MPhil Theses

June 30, 2022


Citation practices are inevitable in academic writing, but different disciplinary communities have different preferences. This study is a cross- disciplinary study of citation types in the literature review section of MPhil theses. Employing a qualitative approach, textual analysis of thirty theses selected from the disciplines of English and Curriculum Studies was carried out in addition to an analysis of interview data from lecturers and MPhil students of the selected disciplines. A key finding of the study was that while students of the Department of English used more integral citations, students of Curriculum Studies preferred non-integral citations. Integral citation was found with active sentences, S-genitive forms, and multiple forms of citations. Non-integral citation, however, was realised in numerical, single sources, sources with and without pages. While integral citation was used when the information was central to the discussion, non-integral citation was used when the information was peripheral and assumes the status of a general knowledge. The study adds to existing literature on disciplinary variation.