Research Paper Citation Styles

Research Paper Citation Styles

Always confirm which citation style your instructor wants you to use for your research paper. Instructors sometimes develop their own unique methods but most often they will recommend one of the following popular styles: APA, MLA, Turabian, Chicago, CBE or AMA.

The APA and MLA standards are the most widely used formats at Western. You can find books describing both methods in the library's circulating and reserve collections; however, the Web is host to many fine sites that describe the proper methods for citing sources in the APA and MLA formats:

Citation Builders

Programs exist that automatically create citations in various styles. The best ones require purchase, but some sites on the Web will construct citations in desired formats for free. Users merely follow directions and "fill in the blanks" with information about the book, article, or Website. CAUTION: These programs have flaws, always carefully examine the records that they produce before inserting them into a "Works Cited" pr "References" page.

Complete Sample Research Paper in Each Format

Diana Hacker's Website is based on her booklet, Research Documentation in the Electronic Age. She provides examples of how an entire research paper should look in each of the various formats.

Answers to Writing Questions

Purdue's Owl Writing Lab provides examples of APA & MLA formats and is a great source of help for all kinds of writing questions. This site is recommended by some Western instructors.

Examples For Citing Electronic Sources

Owens Library at Northwest Missouri State University offers an excellent set of examples and explanations for citing various ful-text subscription services such as EbscoHost, infoTrac, and Lexis-Nexis.