Quickly and easily cite your sources with Explore in Google Docs


A photo of couple exploring a city

Love exploring? Explore sources in Google Docs!

So you may not be writing assignments right now. It’s summer break and you have no interest in churning out a fully referenced, 3000-word paper on anything.

But we thought we’d tell you about some new additions to Google Docs, and to the suite of Google Apps (now appropriately called G Suite).

There are some new features that may make your life a tad easier come Trimester 1, and you need to engage your dusty word processing skills.

So back in September, Google launched Explore in Google Docs, Sheets and Slides. According to their promotional material, Explore aims to ‘give you the insights, design tools and research recommendations you need to do you best work’.

That sounds wonderful, but what does it actually offer you? What can you now do in Google Docs that you couldn’t do, say back in August?

Well, for one, you can insert footnotes at the click of a button. To be fair, we aren’t sure how many of you use footnotes at Griffith. But if you do, you will find this pretty cool.

When you open Google Docs, there is a little button located in the bottom right-hand corner. It looks like a four-point star (sorry for the lame description). That is the Explore button. Once you click on this you’ll be able to insert citations as footnotes in your Google Doc.

Simply, search for content in Explore (Google Docs also suggests content), hover over the search result and click the Cite as footnote button (which looks like a double quotation mark). You can even change the format of your citation, switching between the MLA, APA, and Chicago styles.

For more information on Google Docs Explore, go to the Google Help Centre.