The citation style you use will depend on the subject you are learning and the
requirements of your teacher.
Two of the most commonly used citation styles are those of the American Psychological Association (known as APA style, shown below), and the Modern Language Association (known as MLA style). APA is the preferred style for social sciences such as business, psychology, and sociology. MLA is the preferred style for humanities-related areas such as literature, history, and the arts.
MLA and APA- all demand that you collect similar data elements from the sources you use- author, title, date of publication, etc. However each style requires that you note those elements in different orders, giving different emphasis, because of the importance of those elements to the particular academic field of study. For example, the timeliness of publications may be of more importance to the social sciences and sciences, hence the "Date of Publication" appears closer to the beginning of citations in the APA style than it does in MLA.
|American Psychological Association. (2009). Publication manual of the American
Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: The Association.
Modern Language Association. (2009). MLA handbook
for writers of
research papers. New York, NY: The Association.
Some other commonly used styles include AMA (American Medical
Association), Chicago, Turabian, CBE (Council of Biology Editors) and Legal (Bluebook).
The bibliographic citations for these style manuals are as follows:
Iverson, C. (2007). American Medical Association manual of style:
A guide for authors and editors (10th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University
The Chicago manual of style (15th
ed.). (2003). Chicago, IL:
The University of Chicago Press.
Turabian, K.L. (2007). A manual for writers of term
papers, theses, and dissertations
(7th ed.). Chicago, IL: The
University of Chicago Press.
Council of Biology Editors. Style Manual
Committee. (2006). Scientific style and format:
CBE manual for authors, editors, and publishers (7th
ed.). Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge
The Bluebook: A uniform system of citation (18th ed.).
(2008). Cambridge, MA: The
Harvard Law Review
Here is a list of subjects or disciplines and the citation style(s) they commonly
|Arts and Humanities
||MLA, Chicago, Turabian
|Behaviorial and Social Sciences
|Law and Legal Studies
Helpful guides to these styles can be found at the following Web sites:
NOTE: You should be aware that there is a time lag with some citation
styles being more recently updated than others. Some provide more guidance than other on
how to cite sources on the Internet and in subscription databases. See Electronic Reference Formats
Recommended by the APA and MLA Style How do I document sources from the Web in my works-cited list? for the
most recent additions for citing materials from the Internet and subscription databases.
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