Recently, we discovered that the common citation generators used by most university students may include false information in their citations. While it is simple to just add the website and let the generator create the citation for you, if you get caught with an incorrect citation, it could lead to an academic offense. We took this newfound knowledge as inspiration to create a website that requires you to ensure the citation information is correct, but still offers help with the formatting of the citation, since that tends to be the most tricky part of the process.
What it does
Cite Safe works in four simple steps. First, you choose the citation style that you would like to use, this helps us to format your citation properly in the end. Second, you fill in the information that you know about the source, such as the Author, the Title, and the date it was published. Third, you click "Create Citation". Finally, you can copy the citation that is generated for you and put it directly into your work, confident that the information is correct and you will not be held accountable for any academic offense.
How I built it
Cite Safe was build using a combination of React JS, HTML, and CSS.
Challenges I ran into
The main challenge in developing Cite Safe was that we needed a different style of formatting the information based on the selected Citation Style.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
In general we are proud of the design we came up with as we were able to keep the page simple and easy to use. As well we were able to implement the functionality that allowed us to switch between different citation styles which involved displaying different required and optional fields, and modifying the final formatting of the citation style when you click "Create Citation".
What I learned
Along with learning more about how to format information for different citation styles, we were able to use the project to further expand our knowledge and experience using React JS, HTML, and CSS.
What's next for Cite Safe
Taking Cite Safe further, we would love to include a wider range of citation styles that could be selected, as currently we focused on three: IEEE, APA, and MLA, but there are many others that exist and are commonly used. As well, it would be great to add a field to select the type of source that you are referencing whether that is a journal, a book, a website or anything else as the type of source has an impact on the type of fields included in the citation. Third, it would be helpful to expand the fields to allow the user to input multiple authors, as many papers and journals are written in partners or small groups. Finally, moving forward with Cite Safe, we would love to take a look at the accessibility standards, WCAG A and AA, to ensure that anyone, regardless of their ability, can effectively use Cite Safe.