Common knowledge: to cite or not to cite?

In academic writing, the concept of “common knowledge” refers to information that an average educated reader would accept without needing the validation of a source reference.

There are two main categories that can be considered common knowledge:

  • Information that most people know.
  • Information shared by a specific group of people, such as a national or cultural group, or members of a certain professional field.

In academic writing it is important to cite your sources, but statements that are considered common knowledge do not need a citation.

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