Data Services: Citing Data Sets

This guide provides information on managing data and obtaining secondary data for research.

Data Set Citation Components

Data should be cited within a publication just as other literature are cited. Use the appropriate format based on the style you're using (eg. APA, Chicago, Turabian, etc.). The minimum amount of information that should be included in a data set citation is the following:

1. Author (s)

2. Title

3. Date published

4. Universal, persistent Identifier (PID)

5. Some way to resolve the PID (DOIs and ARKs both have resolution services)

6. Date accessed

Sample Data Citation Formats

APA Style

Pew Hispanic Center. (2008). 2007 Hispanic Healthcare Survey [Data file and code book]. Retrieved from

MLA Style

Cool, H. E. M., and Mark Bell. “ExcavaGons at St Peter’s Church, Barton‐upon‐Humber.” Archaeology Data Service, 2001. Web. 1 May 2011. <>


Duncan, Otis D., and Howard Schuman. Detroit Area Study, 1971: Social Problems and Social Change in Detroit [Computer file]. ICPSR07325-v2. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1997. doi:10.3886/ICPSR07325


Ord TJ (2011) Receiver perception predicts species divergence in long-range communication. Animal Behaviour, online in advance of print. doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2011.10.016

Ord TJ (2011) Data from: Receiver perception predicts species divergence in long-range communication. Dryad Digital Repository. doi:10.5061/dryad.367ns290

Compiled from, and

Citations to YOUR Data

It is also important to encourage other researchers to cite YOUR data when they reuse it. Be sure to provide a suggested citation whenever you share your data.