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Citation Management : Format a Citation

A guide for all things citation management.

Formatting Accuracy

Though citation managers are great at collecting and organizing resources for your research, their citation formatting is not always 100% accurate based on the rules for MLA, APA, Chicago, etc. Errors in citation formatting are sometimes a result of bad metadata from the publisher, metadata that breaks down during exporting, or changes in style rules over time.

To ensure that your citation management tool is producing accurate citations, it is a good idea to double check the formatting with an official style guide. See below for the library's print and online resources for MLA, APA, and Chicago.

MLA Citation Style

The Modern Language Association (MLA) style for writing a research paper is used primarily in the humanities.

In the MLA Handbook (see below) you will find information on how to format and cite resources in your papers.

There are also several other online resources that outline the formatting and citation structure used in MLA style. A few of these resources are listed below.

APA Citation Style

APA Style for writing a research paper is used primarily in the social sciences.

In The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (see below), you will find tips on how to format and cite resources you in your papers.

There are also several other resources that outline the formatting and citation structure used in APA style.  A few of these resources are listed below.

Chicago Citation Style

Chicago Style for writing a research paper is used primarily in the humanities, particularly in the discipline of history.

The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition (see below) uses both a "Notes and Bibliography" (NB) system and an "Author-Date" system (similar to APA and MLA). The NB system uses footnotes or endnotes and offers the author an opportunity to comment or elaborate on the source or text.

In the Chicago Manual, you will find tips on how to format and cite resources in your papers. There are also several online resources that outline the formatting and citation structure used in Chicago Style. A few of these resources are listed below.