What is the correct way to treat references modified by intro signals in my source?

Consider the following case, where the primary source is by Example (1999):

From the arguments discussed above, it can clearly be shown that some pigs can fly. These pigs are called Flypigs (see Author, 1988).

Now, if I want to make use of this term, how is it properly cited?

I.e. do I only reference Example (1999), because Flypigs is not a direct reference to Author (1988) but only modified by a intro signal; or do I use Author (1988, as cited in Example, 1999); or some combination of both?

  • 1
    From your question, I don't understand why Example (1999) needs to be cited at all (in this same spot). Nov 3, 2022 at 13:41
  • According to APA guidelines, the intro signal "see" is to be used, if a statement is based on the works of another author, but a step of inference is made from their works to reach the statement made. Therefore, if a statement is referenced with a "see" intro signal, that statement is not found as is in the referenced author. Therefore, the primary source -- Example (1999) -- has to be cited in my understanding.
    – Emil_M
    Nov 4, 2022 at 14:12
  • I am still not following, perhaps because the example is hypothetical. Nov 4, 2022 at 14:13
  • Unfortunately I cannot find the cited source to check, but the into signal would suggest that the term is not actually taken from the referenced work (Author, 1988), in which case it would be inaccurate to (only) cite Author (1988) instead of Example (1988), no?
    – Emil_M
    Nov 4, 2022 at 14:18
  • Please edit your question to identify the exact scenario you are imagining (e.g. A88 said pigs can fly, but E99 named them "Flypigs"). Nov 4, 2022 at 14:57

1 Answer 1


If the term flypigs was introduced in Author (1988), as the position of the citation in the example suggests, I see no reason to cite Example (1999), at least with regards to the naming.

If instead flypigs was introduced in Example (1999) (but then I would expect the citation of Author in the example to go at the end of the first sentence, not the second), you can cite Example (1999) directly.

Also note that depending on the field and how common the name is, the naming itself might not warrant a citation.

To answer the question in the title, I would only use "as cited in" if the original citation was not available anymore, you have no way to verify its claims, but somehow you do need to cite that original paper. I have (almost) never seen it used, but it might be field-dependent.

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