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Citing Sources

Selecting a Style Manual

text citation
 

What is a Style Manual?

Most schools, colleges, universities and businesses have a preferred style. Find out which style manual you are expected to use.  If one has not been selected, choose one yourself and stick to that particular style.  Most style manuals have an online version as well as a printed manual.  The online versions require annual fees and may offer extra Q & A services.  The printed manuals involve a one time fee and need replacing as new versions are released. 

The following are some style manuals recommended by scholarly associations for preparing manuscripts, research papers and other publications. The books (manuals) outline the mechanics of writing, such as punctuation, quotation, and documentation of sources. They exist in both in print and on the web (usually available by online subscription).

 

Some Preferred Manuals

AP, The Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law, usually called the AP Stylebook, is a style and usage guide used by newspapers and the news industry in the United States. The book is updated annually by Associated Press editors, usually in June. Reporters, editors and others use the AP Stylebook as a guide for grammar, punctuation and principles and practices of reporting.

 

APA, American Psychological Association, style is a set of rules that authors use when submitting papers for publications in APA journals. The APA states that they were developed to assist reading comprehension in the social and behavioral sciences, for clarity of communication, and to "move the idea forward with a minimum of distraction and a maximum of precision."

 

Chicago Manual, The Chicago Manual of Style, is a style guide for American English. It has been published since 1906 by the University of Chicago Press. It is a widely used and respected style guide, and it is preferred by many for American English style, grammar, and punctuation. Including over 850 pages, it is very complete with a lot of information not found in the other style manuals.

 

Gregg, The Gregg Reference Manual, is a manual of style, grammar, usage and formatting.  The book, named after John Gregg, is written by William A. Sabin. The manual is written for students, business professionals and editors who are preparing material for distribution or publication. The manual contains detailed answers and examples that are often not available in other style manuals. 

 

MLA, The Modern Language Association of America, is a professional association in the United States for scholars of language and literature. The focus of MLA is "strengthen the study and teaching of language and literature." It is primarily used by academic scholars, professors, and graduate students who study or teach language and literature, including English, other modern languages, and comparative literature. 

 

 

 

 

In-text Citation

Let your reader know where you found information

 

Two Steps

Borrowing information, not personally gathered or self-generated, requires a path to its source.

Step 1 :   An in-text citation — insert a short reference in the body of your paper after the borrowed information.

Step 2:    A Works Cited page — include a formatted list of sources on a separate page at the end of the paper.

 

In-Text Citation

Including a citation note after a sentence or paragraph is an immediate way of letting the reader know where to find the information. 

(1) If the author's name appears in an introductory statement, then include the page number at the end of the quoted information.

According to Hogue, the purpose of an in-text citation is to refer the reader to the works-cited list at the end of your paper. In-text citations are also called parenthetical references because they are enclosed in parentheses.  Place in-text citations immediately after the borrowed information, usually at the end  of a sentence before the final period. (533)

(2) If the author's name or work is not mentioned specifically, include the author's last and page number. 

The purpose of an in-text citation is to refer the reader to the works-cited list at the end of your paper. In-text citations are also called parenthetical references because they are enclosed in parentheses.  Place in-text citations immediately after the borrowed information, usually at the end  of a sentence before the final period.  (Hogue 353).

The name or phrase provided in the in-text citation should be the first element that appears as the corresponding entry in the Works Cited list.

 

 

 

 

Works Cited

Give your reader a direct path to the resource you used

 

Works Cite List / Page

List all the sources that you actually used in your paper. (Don't include sources that you read but didn't use.) Place the list at the end of the paper or writing on its own page.

A  full citation of the source should be listed in the Works Cited section at the end of the writing.

(at end of paper)
arrow down

Works Cited

 

 

 

MLA 8th Edition Changes (1 Apr. 2016)

One format for all media types

 

Works Cited: MLA 8th Edition Changes in Formatting of Resources

The new edition is not centered of publication formats. Rather it is centered on the elements common to most publications: author, title, etc. That is, there are no special instructions for a particular media type (e.g., book, magazine, journal, tweet). And there may be more than one way to document a publication; the important thing is that enough information is provided so that the reader can find the source.

The MLA 8th Edition includes the following:

Abbreviations include the following: U (U of Texas), UP (University Press),  Jan., Feb., Mar., Apr., May, June, July, Aug., Sep., Oct., Nov., Dec., ch. (chapter),p. (page) pp. (pages), par. (paragraph), sec. (section), dept. (department), ed. (edition), rev. (revised), vol. (volume), no. (number, issue), et al. (and others), e.g. (example), i.e. (clarification), circa (approximate before a date). (MLA 96)

 

 

 

One Citation Format

For all media types

 

Punctuate each element:

 

Elements

AUTHOR.
  • Author: Hall, Michael. (2) Hall, Michael and Alexis Hall. (3+) Hall, Michael, et al.
  • Username: janorwell86  (username on a website or listerv)
  • Handle: @POTUS (President of the United States) as in Twitter
  • No author: Skip. Begin with title.
TITLE OF SOURCE..

A title is placed in quotation marks if the source is part of a larger work. (e.g., essay, story, poem, chapter, song, photograph or scene). A title is placed in italics if the title is self-contained (e.g., a book, an album, a play, a movie.) When a work that is normally independent appears in a collection, the title of the work remains in quotes ("Sunflowers." Arles Sunflowers, by Van Gogh).

SMALLER / DEPENDENT WORK
  • Chapter title: "The Power of Context."
  • Song title: "Every Breath You Take."
  • Photograph title: "Texas 2006."
  • Scene title: "Strange Attacks."
  • Email title: "Re: Board Meeting on Team Building."
  • Tweet title: "Love the way you sang that on #VoiceFinale."
  • Facebook title: "Ha ha! I love your expression in this photo."
LARGER / INDEPENDENT WORK
  • Book title: The Tipping Point.   (Include initial article "The" or "A".)
  • Album title: Synchonicity.
  • Painting title: Sunflowers.
  • Movie title: The Birds.   
  • Image without title: Provide a short description (no quotes)
CONTAINER,

The title element of the containserthe titled source: chapter, song, photo, painting, scene, post. It is placed in italics or and followed by a comma.

CONTAINER OF SMALLER PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED WORK IN QUOTES
  • Book title: The Tipping Point, 
  • Album title: Synchronicity,    
  • Series of Photographs: America by Car,  
  • Series of Paintings: Arles Sunflowers,    
  • Movie title: The Birds,   
  • Website: Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter (posting services)   
OTHER CONTRIBUTORS.
  • Edited: Edited by Joseph Gibaldi,  (First, Last name)
  • Directed: Directed by Stanley Kubrick,
  • Performance: Performance by Elizabeth Taylor,
  • Produced: Produced by Steven Spielberg,
  • Others: Adapted by, Illustrated by, Introduction by, Forward by, Dedication by, Narrated by, Translated by, Uploaded by, Received by (email)
VERSION
  • Edition: 2nd ed.,  (3rd ed., Kindle ed., iBook ed., Expanded ed., Updated ed., )
  • Version: version 2,   (unrated version, unabridged version, remastered version, X-rated version, director's cut)
  • Others: Revised, Radio Edit, Authorized King James Version, Annotated Version
NUMBER.
  • Volume: vol. 3,  (3rd ed., Kindle ed. iBook ed., and so on)
  • Number: no. 22  (use "no." for issue)
  • Other: season 3, episode 4
PUBLISHER.
  • Publishing Company: Green Day Books,   (without LLC or Inc.)  Oxford UP  (Shorten "University Press" to UP.)
  • Distributor: A & M Records, Universal Pictures,  Walt Disney Pictures/Pixar Animation Studios
  • Exhibitor: National Gallery, London,
  • Website: Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia
  • Blog site: Medium
PUBLICATION DATE.
  • Date of Publication: 6 Mar. 2016,
  • Year of Publication: 2016,
LOCATION.
  • Page: p. 12.  (pp. 12–15  [pages], par. 3  [paragraph] )
  • URL: www.apple.com.  ( URL or DOI, Digital Object Identifier, number or "permalink")
  • Time Code: 11: 22:05. (a location specifying—hour, minute, second—in a media player)
  • City (gallery): The Louvre, Paris.
CONTAINER 2

Container 2 is something that holds the content of Container 1. Typically, it is a database, a network of content, a content manager, a multi-volume book, a collection of short stories or poems, a television series, or even a website.

TITLE OF CONTAINER 2
  • Database:  JSTOR, EBSCOHost, ProQuest, ERIC, COCA, PubMed, WorldCat,
  • Music: iTunes, Spotify, Pandora
  • Video: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, HBO,
  • Books: Gutenburg Project, Google Books,
OTHER CONTRIBUTORS (if needed)
VERSION  (if needed)
NUMBER  (if needed)
PUBLISHER  (if needed)
PUBLICATION DATE  (if needed)
LOCATION
  • URL.
  • Permalink.  (a link that remains the same whether or not the website organization changes)
  • DOI    Digital Object Identifier.   (Read about DOI links in Resources below.)
OPTIONAL ELEMENTS
  • Accessed on 15 Aug. 2016. (This is especially useful for sites whose content may change, expire or be deleted.)
  • Date of original publication (include this if it will help the reader find the source or provide insight to its creation.)
  • City of Publication (Include for books published before 1900, a book  with differing versions based on location,
  • Other facts about the source (multi-volume publication)
  • An unexpected type of work (a lecture, an address, a transcript)
  • Licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 International.

(MLA 50)

 

See sections below:  BooksPeriodicals | Visual Arts | Audio Performances | Film & Video Recording | Social Media | Other Resources

 

 

 

 

Books (MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Cite a page, chapter, book or database of books

book

 

BOOK–PRINT

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled source.

AUTHOR

Gladwell, Malcom.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"The Power of Context."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

The Tipping Point,

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER
PUBLISHER

Back Bay Books/Little, Brown and Company,

PUBLICATION DATE

2000,

LOCATION

pp. 169–92. 

BOOK–ELECTRONIC

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

Gladwell, Malcom.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"The Power of Context."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

The Tipping Point,

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION

Kindle Version,

NUMBER
PUBLISHER

Back Bay Books/Little, Brown and Company,

PUBLICATION DATE

2006,

LOCATION.  

pp. 169–92. 

 

 

Printed Books

Reference Book

Chapter in a Book

Book

 

Electronic Books (Online Reference, eBooks/Readers, Public Databases, Project Gutenberg)

 

Listing a Repeated Author

 

Other focuses  include listing first, the author, editor, translator, or person introduces the book (writes the "forward").

  (The bold text below is meant to highlight the focus. It is not actually part of the citation format.)

MLA Book CitationDrag and Drop Practice.

 

 

 

Periodicals(MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Cite a magazine, newspaper, journal or blog

journal

 

 

JOURNAL–PRINT

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled source.

AUTHOR

Hodnett, et al.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Effectiveness of Nurses as Providers of Birth Labor Support in North American Hospitals."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

JAMA,

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER

vol. 288 no. 11,

PUBLISHER

American Medical Association,  (may be omitted)

PUBLICATION DATE

2002,

LOCATION.

pp. 1373-81.

JOURNAL–ELECTRONIC

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

Hodnett, et al.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Effectiveness of Nurses as Providers of Birth Labor Support in North American Hospitals."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

JAMA,

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER

vol. 288 no. 11,

PUBLISHER
PUBLICATION DATE

2002,

LOCATION  

pp. 1373-81.

CONTAINER 2

PubMed/NLM,

LOCATION

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12234231.

 

 

Periodicals

 

MLA Magazine CitationDrag and Drop Practice.

MLA Journal CitationDrag and Drop Practice.

 

 

Visual Arts(MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Cite a painting, lithograph, photograph, sculpture, mural and more

painting

 

 

Citing a Work of Art

BOOK–PRINT

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled source.

AUTHOR

Van Gogh, Vincent.

TITLE OF SOURCE

Sunflowers.

TITLE OF CONTAINER
CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER

NG3863,

PUBLISHER
PUBLICATION DATE

1888,

LOCATION. 

National Gallery, London.

BOOK–ELECTRONIC

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

Van Gogh, Vincent.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Sunflowers."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

The Arles Sunflowers,

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER

NG3863,

PUBLISHER
PUBLICATION DATE

1888,

LOCATION

www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paintings/vincent-van-gogh-sunflowers.

 

If a work of art is part of a series, it is placed in quotes, "Title of Source", and the name of the series is italicized, Container of Series. Otherwise, the work art is placed in italics.

 

Visual Arts  

Paintings

Photographs

Sculpture

 

Internet-based websites for posting paintings, photographs, and illustrations include: Europeana, Flickr, Google Images, Open Clipart Library, Pixabay and Wikimedia Commons.

An internet-based archive for paintings and photographs is ICOM.

MLA Visual Art CitationDrag and Drop Practice.

 

 

 

 

Audio Performances(MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Cite music, plays, operas and other performances

music

 

BOOK–PRINT

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled source.

AUTHOR

Sting.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Every Breath You Take."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

Synchronicity,

CONTRIBUTORS

Performed by The Police,  Produced by  The Police and Hugh Padgham,

VERSION
NUMBER
PUBLISHER

A & M,

PUBLICATION DATE

1983.

LOCATION
BOOK–ELECTRONIC

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

Sting.

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Every Breath You Take."

TITLE OF CONTAINER

Every Breath You Take The Classics,

CONTRIBUTORS

Performed by The Police,

VERSION

stereo remastered version,

NUMBER
PUBLISHER

A & M,

PUBLICATION DATE

2003.

LOCATION
CONTAINER 2

Spotify,

LOCATION

open.spotify.com/track/0wF2zKJmgzjPTfircPJ2jg.

 

 

Performance Recording (CD, Film, LP or other)

 

Internet-based music archives include: ccMister, iTunes, Jamendo, SoundCloud and Spotify.

 

MLA Music CitationDrag and Drop Practice.

 

 

Film or Video Recording(MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Cite movies, TV episodes, videos and more

film

 

 

Citing a Movie or a Scene in a Movie

FILM

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled source.

AUTHOR

 

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Strange Attacks."

TITLE OF CONTAINER,

The Birds,

CONTRIBUTORS,

Directed by Hitchcock, performance by Tippi Hedron,

VERSION,
NUMBER,
PUBLISHER,

Universal Pictures,

PUBLICATION DATE,

1963.

LOCATION.  
FILM–INTERNET COURSE

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

 

TITLE OF SOURCE

"Strange Attacks."

TITLE OF CONTAINER,

The Birds,

CONTRIBUTORS,

directed by Hitchcock, performance by Tippi Hedron,

VERSION,
NUMBER,
PUBLISHER,

Universal Pictures,

PUBLICATION DATE,

1963.

LOCATION.  
CONTAINER 2

Amazon Video,

LOCATION

www.amazon.com/Birds-Tippi-Hedren/dp/B000ID37KO.

 

 

Video (Movie)

 

Electronic Video (TV episode, Movie, Youtube Video)

Zinkova, Mila. "Blackbird Attacks People." Youtube, 2014, youtube.com/watch?v=7qQcM9yytSI. Accessed 10 Aug. 2016.

 

Citations with different focuses:  (director, actor, producer)

 

Online websites for posting video include: YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, Daily Motion and Twitch.

Archives for film and video include: Amazon Video, Hulu, Netflix and SpinXpress.

 

 

 

Social Media(MLA 8th Ed. Format)

Email, Tweets, Listserv Comments

social media

 

 

Citing social media comments

PAPER MESSAGES

Paper messages typically includes To, From,  Re  and Date.

AUTHOR

FROM: Michael Phelps

TITLE OF SOURCE

RE: Rio 2016

TITLE OF CONTAINER
CONTRIBUTORS

TO: Mom

VERSION
NUMBER
PUBLISHER
PUBLICATION DATE

August 3, 2016, 5:57 PM.

LOCATION 

(a physical location, on a memo pad, a sticky note, etc.)

SOCIAL MEDIA 

Basic information a reader needs to find the titled e-source.

AUTHOR

@MichaelPhelps.    (It is OK to use a pseudonym as an author.)

TITLE OF SOURCE

"I am honored to lead #teamusa into opening ceremonies!! #flagbearer #usa #rio2016."     (Place message in quotes.)

TITLE OF CONTAINER

Twitter,    

CONTRIBUTORS
VERSION
NUMBER,
PUBLISHER
PUBLICATION DATE

3 Aug. 2016, 5:57 PM,

LOCATION 

twitter.com/MichaelPhelps/status/760852165174956032.

 

Social Media

Tweets

A source such as Twitter or Facebook, is considered to be a service where people can author and post content online (a normal website) rather than an archive, a storage site of content that can be retrieved via a database. 

Email

Sevastopoulos, Julie. "Re: Trump Political Cartoons." Received by M. Martinez, 15 Aug. 2016, 2:30 PM.

Listserv

Wang, Hung. "Is the verb left out in this sentence?" English Grammar & Usage StackExchange, 9 Aug. 2016, english.stackexchange.com/questions/342056/is-the-verb-here-left-out-in-the-sentence. Accessed on 9 Aug. 2016.

Facebook

Should Facebook be italicized?  Read the following explanation of why Facebook and Wikipedia websites are placed in italics.

There are also practical benefits to italicizing Facebook, Google+, and so on. The italicization results in more readable prose in a tech-heavy discussion that includes many unitalicized capped terms (acronyms, trademarks, names of companies). Further, the style allows for typographic distinction between titles of sites and similar names of companies. Just as italics helpfully mark the difference between The New York Times (the newspaper) and the New York Times Company, so they allow a useful distinction in “a posting on Facebook” versus “the CEO of Facebook.”

Sanders, June. "Congratulations on the birth of your baby boy!" Facebook, received by V. Galat, 16 July. 2016.

 

 

 

Citing Sources

Resources

 

 

Style Manual Abbreviations used in this website:

AP (The Associated Press Stylebook), APA (Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association), CMOS (The Chicago Manual of Style), GREGG (Gregg Reference Manual), MLA (MLA Handbook)

 

 

 

Practice

Citation Practice

book flying
 

 

Identify the correctly written citation.

  1. Select the response from the list that best completes the sentence. 
  2. Compare your response to the feedback by clicking the "Check" button to the left or the "Check 1-10" button at the bottom.

 

1.

Citation Format for Books - single author

Title: Knossos Mythology—History Guide to the Archaeological Site

Author: Antonis Vassilakis

Publisher: Adam Editions

City Published: Athens

Editor: Costas Adam

Date Published: 2002


2.

Citation Format for a Book with Multiple Authors

 

Title: Aegean Art and Architecture

Author: Donald Preziosi, Louise A. Hitchcock

Publisher: Oxford University Press

City Published: Oxford

Editor: Costas Adam

Date Published: 1999


3.

Book with an Editor Listed Rather Than an Author

 

Title: Atlas of Classical Archaeology

Author: --

Publisher: McGraw-Hill

City Published: New York

Editor: M. I Finley

Date Publisher: 1977


4.

Magazine Article  

 

Title: Palo Alto Idea House

Author: Ann Bertelsen and Daniel Gregory

Magazine name: Sunset

City Published: --

Volume: --

Date Published: September 2002

Pages: 107–108

URL: www.sunset.com


5.

Journal Article 

 

Title: Defying death after DNA damage

Author: Tina Rich, Rachel L. Allen & Andrew H. Wyllie

Associated Institution: Dept. of Pathology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, U.K.

Publisher: Nature

City Published: --

Volume: vol. 407

Date Published: 12 October 2000

 

 


6.

Newspaper Article

Title: Oakland hills fire quelled – 10 acres burn

Author: Suzanne Herel, Ray Delgado

Newspaper name: San Francisco Chronicle

City Published: --

Date: Friday, Sep 20, 2002

Page: C18

URL: http://www.sfgate.com

 


7.

Government Web

 

Title: Mars Gullies Likely Not Formed by Liquid Water

Author: NASA

Editor:

Overall Web site: Astrobiology at NASA

Associated Institution: NASA

Date Posted or Modified: August  4, 2016

Date Visited: August 16, 2016

URL: http://astrobiology.nasa.gov/news/mars-gullies-likely-not-formed-by-liquid-water


8.

Academic Website   (fictitious)

 

Title: Top Ten Ways to Improve Your Writing

Overall Site: The English Writing Center

Author: Jayne McBride

Associated Institution: Midtown College

Location: Los Angeles, California

Date Last Modified: August 1, 2016

Date Visited: August 16, 2016

URL: http://www.midtowncollege.edu/faculty/mcbridej/


9.

A Wiki

 

Title: Amaranth

Authors: Wikipedia contributors

Web site Name: Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia

Associated Institution: Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia

City Published: —

Date Last Modified: January 5, 2014

Year Visited: January 10, 2014

URL: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amaranth 

 


10.

A Film

Title:The Social Network

Director: David Fincher

Performers: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake

Writers: Aaron Sorkin (screenplay), Ben Mezrich (book)

Studio / Distributor: Columbia Pictures, Culver City, California


11.

A Painting

 

Title:The Mona Lisa

Artist: Leonardo da Vinci

Medium: oil on poplar [wood from a type of tree]

Subject: unknown

Date: 1504

Location captured: Italy

Current Location: The Louvre, Paris


1504.

12.

A  Tweet

 

Tweet: Thanks for all the support my peeps #blessed #TeamBolt #TeamJamaica #Rio2016

Tweeter: @usainbolt (Usain St Leo Bolt)

Date: August 15, 2016, 5:44 AM

Website/APP: Twitter

Location: https://twitter.com/usainbolt/status/765016162404929536