Skip to main content Skip to guide navigation
View current library hours and information

Citation Guide

Cite sources, create annotated bibliographies, and avoid plagiarism.

Which style do I use?

There are many standard methods – or styles – for composing citations. These citation styles dictate the order of the information in the citation, as well as punctuation and other formatting. Citation style is often related to your field of study, but always use the style your instructor requires.

  • APA (in this guide)
    Used in psychology and often in other social sciences. The authoritative text is the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, currently in its seventh edition (2020).
  • MLA (in this guide)
    Frequently used for composition, arts, and humanities. The authoritative text is the Modern Language Association's MLA Handbook, currently in its ninth edition (2020).
  • Chicago
    Frequently used for non-scholarly publications, like general interest magazines, books, and news publications. The authoritative text is The Chicago Manual of Style, currently in its 17th edition (2017). (Like the other manuals, ask for it at the reference desk!)

Other styles you may be asked to use include:

  • AMA (American Medical Association)
  • ASA (American Sociological Association)
  • CSE (Council of Science Editors – formerly CBE)
  • ICMJE (International Committee of Medical Journal Editors)
  • Legal

Other style guides in the library

Library photo courtesy of Barry Halkin Photography