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Module 4: Citing Sources--Citation Style Examples


Choose a type of resource to see the citation formatting convention for MLA, APA, and Chicago styles:

Books | Electronic Books | Articles | Electronic Articles | Websites | Personal Communications
Citations in Use


Introduction: Choosing a Style Guide

The most popular method recommended by faculty in comp classes is "Use whatever you like as long as it is consistent."

For the beginner this might simply put a bigger fire under a pan of already simmering anxiety.

When this happens, here is what you should do:

»Choose one of the two major methods or style sheets: American Psychological Association (APA) or Modern Language Association (MLA).

»Some disciplines have their own style sheets, ask a faculty person in your major which style sheet is the most used by your discipline and use that one as your model.


 

 
Books

Mouse over the citations to highlight the differences in each style.

APA

APA book citation

 

MLA

MLA book citation

 

Chicago

Chicago Book citation

 

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Books (electronic)

Electronic book: adds the date you retrieved it last and the url location and in some cases the subscription databases and who the subscriber is.

Mouse over the citations to highlight the differences in each style.

APA

APA electronic book citation

 

MLA

MLA electronic book citation

 

Chicago

Chicago electronic book citation

 

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Articles

Mouse over the citations to highlight the differences in each style.

APA

APA article citation

 

MLA

MLA article citation

 

Chicago

Chicago article citation

 

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Articles (electronic)

Mouse over the citations to highlight the differences in each style.

APA

APA electronic article citation

 

MLA

MLA electronic article citation

 

Chicago

Chicago electronic article citation

 

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Websites

Websites and other information have physical locations on computers somewhere in the micro-space of a computer memory. Nothing mysterious or even special about that.

Mouse over the citations to highlight the differences in each style.

APA

APA website citation

 

If from a large institutional web site include the organization:

APA website citation: large institutional website

 

MLA

MLA website citation

 

If from a large institutional web site include the organization and the homepage of the section from which the item is taken:  

MLA website citation: large institutional website

 

Chicago

Chicago website citation

 

Government/Corporate author example:  

Chicago website citation: government/corporate author

 

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Personal Communication

Except for MLA, conversations are not usually included in the reference list.

APA

InAPA, it is possible to put most of the information in the signal phrase:

K. B. Larsen (personal communication, March 23, 2005) said, �He's hot.�

MLA

InMLA, this would appear on your Works Cited page:

Larsen, K. B. Conversation with the author. 23
     March 2005.

Chicago

A parenthetical note using the abbreviation per. comm. for personal communication at the end of the quote is sufficient:

"He's hot" (K. B. Larsen, per. comm.).

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Look a citation in use:
parenthetical or in-text citations

Here is the same quote in a paper and how it is handled using each of the style guides:

APA

The information in the paper guides the reader to the source in the References section at the end of the paper. The word in red is the author's name and is being used here as the "signal phrase", giving an indication from where the following quote or paraphrase is coming:

Zimmerman , for example, argues that it is "far less ethical to permit the development to term of an infant who is destined to be physically and mentally handicapped throughout life" (1984, p. 190).

Another way to write the signal phrase might be:

Zimmerman (1984), for example...

Inwhich case the parenthetical note would be: (p. 190). So the more information in the signal phrase, the less in the parenthetical note.

Ofcourse, writing �Zimmerman (1984), on page 190, for example ...� would be marked awkward by your teacher.

Here is how the full citation would appear in your References list:
 

References

Zimmerman, B. K. (1984). Biofuture, confronting the genetic era. New York : Plenum Press, 1984
 

MLA

The information in the footnote guides the reader to the specific location in the source and then re-introduces the reader to the source in the bibliography at the end of the paper.

Also, the note at the bottom of the page, in MLA it could just as well have been put at the end in the Endnote section and the Bibliography is optional though sometimes it is required by the professor/editor.

Zimmerman , for example, argues that it is "far less ethical to permit the development to term of an infant who is destined to be physically and mentally handicapped throughout life.1"

-----------------------------

1Burke K. Zimmerman, Biofuture, Confronting the Genetic Era. New York: Plenum Press, 1984. 190.

If Dr. Zimmerman's book were again quoted later in the paper, that footnote would look like this:

23Zimmerman, 1984, 232.

Parenthetical citations can also be used:

Zimmerman , for example, argues that it is "far less ethical to permit the development to term of an infant who is destined to be physically and mentally handicapped throughout life" (190).

This would be listed on the Works Cited page like this:

Works Cited

Burke K. Zimmerman, Biofuture, Confronting the Genetic Era.
     New York: Plenum Press, 1984.
 

Chicago

The mention of the author and then the reference to the title in parenthesis directs the reader to the source of the information given. These guide the reader to the citation at the end of the paper in the Works Cited section.

Zimmerman , for example, argues that it is "far less ethical to permit the development to term of an infant who is destined to be physically and mentally handicapped throughout life." (Biofuture, 190)

Works Cited

Zimmerman, Burke K., Biofuture, confronting the genetic era.
     New York : Plenum Press, 1984.

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Last Updated: 1/3/12