Citing Your Sources

Quick Reference Purdue OWL Citation Chart (MLA, APA, Chicago): this resource—recently updated to reflect the 2016 (8th) edition of the MLA Handbook—is VERY handy. Note that other readily available online resources may still be behind the times.

Integrating sources (a UWC-produced video overview): this UWC video offers help with intellectual property, summary, paraphrase, quotation, and plagiarism questions and issues.


AMA Citation Format

JMU Libraries' AMA Resources page: includes a link to the online AMA Manual of Style (click on the first link on the "Resources" page, and then click on the "AMA Manual of Style" link just below the blue bar).

The Purdue OWL's AMA page is available here.

APA Style

APA (American Psychological Association) style is the preferred citation system of the social sciences, although it is often used in other disciplines. The official Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association is currently in its 6th edition (and is useful to own), but there are many online resources that cover the basics and address the specific questions.

APA style introduction and resources video (a UWC-produced resource)

APA general formatting advice (a UWC-created resource)

UNC APA resources: also offers MLA, Chicago, and CSE/CBE

JMU Libraries' APA Resources page

Purdue OWL APA central

APA Style Blog: this "official companion" to the APA Manual offers expert advice on the tough or odd questions: "reference citations of every sort, grammar and usage, the publication process, and social media." Here's the Style Blog's FAQ page.

Paraphrases and quotations with APA

How to effectively integrate paraphrases into your essay

Short quotations vs. long quotations

APSA Citation Format

JMU Libraries' APSA page

ASA Citation Format

Purdue OWL's ASA resources

Associated Press Style

Associated Press Style (AP Style) is the set of rules followed by most newspapers and magazines. The AP Stylebook is used by writers and editors for formatting, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and word choice. The Stylebook also explains newswriting elements such as attribution, source identification, and photography.

AP Stylebook Online  (available to a maximum of ten JMU users at a single time through the JMU Libraries)

Some of the most commonly consulted entries, along with exercises

Bluebook legal citations

Bluebook citation format is used by lawyers, judges, and law students.

Overview, explanations, and examples

Updates for the 20th Edition of the manual

"Maroonbook: the University of Chicago Manual of Legal Citation": an attempt to simplify the 500-page Bluebook.

Chicago and Turabian

Chicago and Turabian refer to a set of (essentially identical) formatting and citation guidelines that are often used in the social sciences and for some professional publications, Chicago style has been around since 1906, and the Chicago Manual of Style, now in its 17th edition, tries to address every possible question, if you can figure out how ask the question. The Turabian Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, published by the same University of Chicago Press that offers the CMOS, is the more accessible style manual for academic writers.

Chicago Manual of Style Online: available to JMU users and now a bit more user-friendly; non-JMU users can register for a free trial.

Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide: new in 2017, the CMOS Quick Guide.

Turabian Style Quick Guide: if you're writing your first Chicago-style paper, and you don't know the first thing about Chicago style, start with this resource. It offers a bit of introduction and then a tab in the middle of the page for switching between footnotes-bibliography style (literature, history, art) and author-date style (physical, natural, and social sciences).

Overview and Quick Guide

A sample Chicago-formatted paper

JMU Libraries' Chicago/Turabian Resources page


JMU Libraries' Council for Science formerly Biology) Editors Guide 

MLA style

MLA style is the preferred citation system for the humanities. The new (2016) 8th edition of the MLA Handbook addresses concerns about how to cite online sources in all their variety. The guidelines for incorporating and citing quotations, paraphrases, and summaries in your actual text remain unchanged, but the new MLA Handbook offers a flexible, one-size-fits-all template for any source you might need to include on your Works Cited page. 

* Note: many readily available online resources have been slow to register the MLA's new guidelines.

Purdue OWL's MLA central

MLA 8 Works Cited entries guide: this handy, brightly-colored resource from the Saginaw Valley State University Writing Center offers a quick, comprehensive sense of the basic components and considerations involved in citing any source.

JMU Libraries' MLA Resources page


Back to Top