Friday, April 24, 2009

Pre-formatted (APA, MLA, etc) Citations for Journal Articles

If you've ever done a college-level research paper, you probably know that the process of properly citing your sources and formatting them to fit a specific citation style such as APA or MLA can be time-consuming and frustrating.

Luckily, when you do your research through the online library, you have several very useful tools available to you that can help with this. First and foremost, you can find links to citation style details and sample papers right on the library home page (in the middle column).

Second, you can now also use tools, within some of the library databases, to help you do the citation style formatting! Just find the tool and copy-paste the already formatted citation right into your list of references or bibliography (example below is from Academic Search Premier):

WARNING: these citation tools are not foolproof and can and do sometimes get the formatting or information incorrect. Do not just copy and paste without evaluating. Whenever possible, always double-check your citations for proper formatting against an up-to-date citation style guide.

The following major databases have such an option, look for it on any results page (see items highlighted in red on screen shots below):

Academic Search Premier, Business Source Premier & more (EBSCOHost):

ProQuest (ABI/INFORM, etc.):

Academic OneFile, Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center, etc. (Gale):

Questions? Ask a Librarian


deb amory said...

this is very helpful! thanks!! i am actually using endnote, but heard a rumor that there is something available through the college that works even better. any ideas??

deb amory said...

whoops! cancel that last request -- just saw the post re. zotero -- i'm assuming that's the tool that was being referred to, so i'll go check it out. thanks again!

Dana Longley said...

RefWorks, which is basically equivalent to EndNote but works totally over the web and, at least to me as a casual user, is easier to use, should soon be available college-wide. Keep an eye out here for an official announcement.

Zotero is just a Firefox add-on. It isn't nearly as academically functional as RefWorks, but is free and works great for some things.

agathiyan said...

Great thoughts you got there, believe I may possibly try just some of it throughout my daily life.

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