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Emerging AI Tools for Literature Review: Citing GenAI Content

A guide to faciliate the delivery of library workshop Emerging AI Tools for Literature Review

Use of GenAI in Scholarly Publishing

Academic publishers are increasingly providing guidance on the proper acknowledgment, authorship, originality, and accountability practices for integrating GenAI into scholarly writing. Some common guidelines include:

  • Authorship: Authors should not list AI or GenAI tools (such as ChatGPT) as an author or co-author.
  • Disclosure: Authors should clearly state the use of AI or GenAI in research and published works.
    • Suggested sections to declare: Methods or Acknowledgements
    • A suggested format from Elsevier:
During the preparation of this work the author(s) used [NAME TOOL / SERVICE] in order to [REASON]. After using this tool/service, the author(s) reviewed and edited the content as needed and take(s) full responsibility for the content of the publication.


  • Attribution: Besides disclosure, authors should also properly cite AI-generated content in works. Although there are no standard guidelines for referencing GenAI tools, a common practice is to cite it as "Software" or "Personal communication" (see more on the right).
  • Responsibility: Authors are fully responsible for the accuracy and integrity of AI-generated content.

Citing AI Generated Content

At present, most citation styles do not have specific guidelines for referencing ChatGPT or other GenAI tools. The following are some available guidelines or recommendations from a few citation styles.

APA style

How to cite ChatGPT - APA Style Blog (April 7,  2023)

The guide covers examples on:

  • Quoting or reproducing the text created by ChatGPT in your paper (in general, treat as "Personal communication")
  • Creating a reference to ChatGPT or other AI models and software (in general, treat as "Software")

IEEE style

Currently, there are no official recommendations from IEEE for citing AI-generated content. The following is from IEEE's style manual statement (June 2023)

"Any use of AI-generated text in an article must be disclosed in the acknowledgments section of any paper submitted to an IEEE Conference or Periodical. Sections of the document that contain AI-generated material must provide a citation to the AI system that generated the text."

We suggest referring to AI-generated content as Software in IEEE style. 

Basic format for Software:
Title of Software: (version or year), Publisher Name. Accessed: Date (when applicable). [Type of Medium]. Available: URL

[1] ChatGPT (2023), OpenAI. Accessed Aug 2, 2023. [Online]. Available:

MLA style

How do I cite Generative AI in MLA Style?  - MLA blog (March 17, 2023)

Chicago style

Recommendations for Citing ChatGPT & other tools - Chicago Style Blog

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