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This guide was designed to provide you with assistance in citing your sources when writing a paper.
There are different styles that format the citation components slightly differently, so select the tab for the style you need and take a look at some examples.
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While MS Word and other online resources offer automatic formatting tools for citations, these systems are NOT ALWAYS ACCURATE and do not allow for formatting of all pertinent information. While you may use these tools, it is important to double check their accuracy against a style guide such as this.
Many of the SRJC databases provide MLA and APA citation formatting but these are not always accurate.
There are a number of different ways to cite resources in your paper. The citation style usually depends on the academic discipline involved. For example:
- MLA style is typically used by the Humanities
- APA style is often used by Education and Psychology
- Chicago/Turabian is generally used by History, Business, and some of the Fine Arts
- AMA style is used in Medicine, Nursing and Dental Science
- ASA style is used in Sociology
Check with your instructor to make sure you use the required style.
Sign up for NoodleBib, a powerful citation generator, to help you create perfect citations in MLA, APA or Chicago/Turabian styles.
What is Citing?
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- Information is published or recorded in many types of sources: books, periodical articles, websites, blogs, films, even music.
- Regardless of the format of your source, you must give the author or creator credit for their work using a Works Cited or References list along with in-text or parenthetical references to assign credit to the information sources used in your paper. If you do not give credit, you are plagiarizing the author's ideas.
- An individual citation contains standard elements such as author, title and date using a standardized format or "style" (MLA, APA, etc.).
Parts of a Citation
MLA Citation for a Book:
The information needed for a citation is basically the same for any type of source, whether it is a book, article or website. Some sources require more information than others. When in doubt, it is better to give too much information than too little.
Sometimes you will not be able to find all the information needed for a citation. If that happens to you, then do not include it. For example if there is no author listed for a book then you start the citation with the title.