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The current dipole is a widely used source model in forward and inverse electroencephalography and magnetoencephalography applications. Analytic solutions to the governing field equations have been developed for several approximations of the human head using ideal dipoles as the source model. Numeric approaches such as the finite-element and finite-difference methods have become popular because they allow the use of anatomically realistic head models and the increased computational power that they require has become readily available. Although numeric methods can represent more realistic domains, the sources in such models are an approximation of the ideal dipole. In this paper, we examine several methods for representing dipole sources in finite-element models and compare the resulting surface potentials and external magnetic field with those obtained from analytic solutions using ideal dipoles.