- Rather than memorizing citation formats or buying expensive books explaining those formats, you can usually find the answer to “How do I cite this?” online.
- Note: Online citation generators on the regular Internet that you find via Google vary widely, both in quality and in currency. Some are okay, and some are terrible. (The generator built into Google Scholar, for example, returned outdated results for MLA style on several test citations I ran). But you can often get a good start toward a decent Works Cited or Reference list entry from the citation generators include in the library databases, as in the example below. The generated citation might need a bit of tweaking, but it has a fair chance of being mostly correct. Use the generator to capture the tedious stuff, then double-check the citation against the examples linked below and tweak as needed.
- Works Cited: Periodicals (journals, magazines, newspapers, etc.) (Purdue OWL)
- Works Cited: Electronic sources (webpages, websites, tweets, YouTube, etc.) (Purdue OWL)
- Works Cited: Books (Purdue OWL)
- Basics of reference list (Purdue OWL)
- Author/authors in reference list (Purdue OWL)
- Periodicals (journals, magazines, newspapers, etc.) in reference list (Purdue OWL)
- Books in reference list (Purdue OWL)
- Electronic Sources (Purdue OWL)
- Common reference examples (APA)
- Purdue OWL resources on Chicago style. Keep in mind that there are two “Chicago styles”: notes-bibliography and author-date. Which one are you using?
- Chicago Manual of Style Online Q&A
Citation Tracing and Webs of Citations
As part of your development as a researcher, you will be asked to understand who has said what about the facets of your research question and how others’ contributions can help you to answer your own question. One reason why researchers cite sources is to establish a trail that others can follow–that trail leads backwards to earlier sources, and forwards to later sources.
- Citation Tracing (YouTube video explaining basics of backward and forward citation tracing)
- Connected Papers (tool for visualizing webs of citations and for accessing citation trails in other places, e.g., Google Scholar.