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Citation Styles: APA, MLA, Chicago, & Beyond!: Home

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Listed below are a few quick links to resources that will aid you in citing sources.

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Getting Started: How to use this guide

This LibGuide was designed to provide you with assistance in citing your sources when writing an academic paper.
citation is a way of giving credit to individuals for their creative and intellectual works that you utilized to support your research. It can also be used to locate particular sources and combat plagiarism. Typically, a citation can include the author's name, date, location of the publishing company, journal title, or DOI (Digital Object Identifier).
Citing your sources is an important and required part of any academic research project. But, why?

We cite in order to:

  • Give Credit  Standard practice requires giving credit to the author of the original words, ideas, or research to show honor and respect for their work and legal rights.
  • Avoid Plagiarism  Citing your sources ensures that you are not taking credit for the work of another.
  • Maintain the Accuracy and Credibility of Your Work  Citations establish that your data and facts are correct and allows the reader to check the source for themselves.

There are different citation styles which format information differently. In each tab, you will find descriptions of each citation style featured in this guide along with links to online resources for citing and a few examples.

What is a citation style?

A citation style dictates the information necessary for a citation and how the information is ordered, as well as punctuation and other formatting.

How to do I choose a citation style?

There are many different ways of citing resources from your research. The citation style sometimes depends on the academic discipline involved. The three most commonly used citation styles at W&J are: 

  • APA (American Psychological Association) 
  • MLA (Modern Language Association) 
  • Chicago/Turabian

*Sometimes citation styles are indicated in the syllabus or assignment guidelines. When in doubt, you will need to consult with your professor to determine what is required.

Click the links below to find descriptions of each style along with a sample of major in-text and bibliographic citations, links to books, online citation manuals, and other free online resources.


This research guide was is based on one created by LaMonica Wiggins, MLIS Graduate Student, Hillman Library, University of Pittsburgh 2010-11, Katherine DeRusso, MLIS Graduate Student, Hillman Library, University of Pittsburgh 2010-11, and Marissa Clardy, Intern, Clarion University of Pennsylvania, 2015.