When writing any type of paper for class, you will probably refer to the intellectual work of others as support for your own ideas, arguments, and assertions. As you do so, principles of ethical behavior and of academic integrity demand that you give credit to the originators of the ideas or the specific sentences and phrases you use.
The reason that academic papers require the use of highly detailed methods of making references to the work of others is to avoid the risk of seeming to pass off the work of someone else as your own work. This is one way of defining plagiarism. You should take a look at the library guide Academic Integrity: Resources for Students & Faculty to learn more details about academic integrity and the University's policies.
The following tutorials will go further toward introducing you to the intersection of academic integrity and citations and references.
This box lists the principal style guides in use at Piedmont University. The list below links to highly detailed guides from the Purdue University Online Writing Lab, the Purdue OWL. You'll find there detailed examples for creating citations and references in the APA, MLA, the Chicago/Turabian styles, and some others in use at Piedmont University. The OWL guides also have great examples of making references to web documents, websites, and other types of online-based information.
You should also look for further detailed introductions and learning materials to the APA, MLA, Chicago/Turabian, and AMA styles under the links in the navigation menu.