Question and Answer

I can’t find the citations that ChatGPT gave me. What should I do?

ChatGPT makes up citations that don't exist.

ChatGPT might give you articles by an author that usually writes about your topic, or even identify a journal that published on your topic, but the title, pages numbers, and dates are completely fictional. This is because ChatGPT is not connected to the internet, so has no way of identifying actual sources.

You can try to see if any are valid by searching in Library Search on our home page or in Google Scholar, but chances are the sources do not exist.

It's better to use ChatGPT for tasks like these:

  • Brainstorming and getting creatively unstuck
  • Editing and constructive criticism of your writing
  • Explaining concepts at multiple difficulty levels
  • Summarizing long texts
  • other writing and text-related tasks.

It's not designed to be a search engine. Use Library Search, Google Scholar, or databases for your discipline instead.

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