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Copyright Guidelines

These guidelines are designed to help faculty and students use materials legally without having to understand a lot of legalese

When to Cite an Image

  • You should cite any image you did not create.
  • PowerPoint presentations - include a citation either on the slide with the image to which the citation belongs or have a separate "bibliography" slide at the end of the presentation with citations.
    • If you use a bibliography slide, make sure to identify the image the citation belongs to. Numbered citations work well for this - just number the image on its original slide and number the citations to match.
  • Course handouts/coursepacks - All images must be cited (unless you created them).
    • If you are handing out a page with an image, make sure that you include the citation for the book or article with the image.
    • If you are creating a coursepack, images within the context of articles are fine but any extra images need citations to the book or article from which they come.
    • Images from the internet are NOT free to use - they are copyrighted unless specifically noted otherwise. Citations of these can be more difficult but are necessary.

How to Cite an Image From a Book or Article

  • Include the author, publication date, title of graph/chart/table, the type of figure. Include the work that it appears in.
  • The formatting will depend on the specific style you want to use.
    • The following example is in APA style:

Sample image of a graphWahome, E. (2016). National and coastal population trends since 1948 [graph]. In Deisser A. & Njuguna M. (Eds.), Conservation of Natural and Cultural Heritage in Kenya: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach. London: UCL Press.

How to Cite an Image From the Internet

  • When using an image from a source like the internet, use the author/creator of the image, the role of the creator, the date, the title of the image, the type of work, and where you got it (URL).
  • Some of this information may be missing, use as much as you can.
  • The formatting will depend on the specific style you want to use.
    • The following example is in APA style:

image of a kittenKpjas, K. P. J. (2003). Stray Kitten Rambo001 [Photograph]. Retrieved from 



  • If you are using an image licensed by a Creative Commons License, you can include the type of license as well. Although this is not addressed by style guides specifically, it helps you and your users to know when a work is licensed and what the terms of the license are.

Kpjas, K. P. J. (2003). Stray Kitten Rambo001 [Photograph]. Retrieved from CC BY-SA 2.5 (

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