Citing an essay: getting acquainted with MLA and APA
It doesn’t matter if you are just a high school student or you are already a professional writer: you should be able to cite the sources you use with a specific style of formatting. Two most popular and commonly used in citing styles are MLA and APA. They make sure there is no plagiarism in the text and provide the readers with the link where they can find more info about the paper.
As citations are very important part of your essay, you should directly follow the instructions. So let’s consider the requirements for each of the given styles.
MLA basic rules
MLA is the abbreviation from the Modern Language Association. It is a formatting style mainly used in humanities such as English studies, foreign languages, literature, comparative literature or cultural studies. So how to cite a book in an essay according to MLA?
- Write the last name of the author followed by a comma and the first name followed by a period. Then put the essay name in quotations (the period must be inside the last one) and make the first letters of words capital.
- Write the title in italics (if you hand write, then just underline it). Before you write the name of the editor, use “Ed.”.
- Location of the book should be written followed by a colon and then – name of the publisher.
You can use the following example to understand what we mean: Harris, Muriel. “Talk to Me: Engaging Reluctant Writers.” A Tutor’s Guide: Helping Writers One to One. Ed. Ben Rafoth. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2000. 24-34. Print.
APA basic rules
APA is the abbreviation from the American Psychological Association, and this formatting style is actively used in business, social sciences and nursing. How to cite an article in an essay according to APA style?
- Write the last name of the author followed by a comma and the first name followed by a period.
- Write the essay title ending it with a period. You should capitalize only the first letter in the first word and not all of them like in MLA.
- Write it in italics or underline and then end it with a period.
You can use the following example to understand what we mean: Bjork, R. A. (1989). Retrieval inhibition as an adaptive mechanism in human memory. In H. L. Roediger III, & F. I. M. Craik (Eds.), Varieties of memory & consciousness (pp. 309-330). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
How to cite a website in an essay
MLA formatting style does not require adding the URL, However, they require you to include the publisher of the website or its sponsor (and usually it is a corporation, not an individual).
For instance: Last, First M. “Article Title.”Website Title. Website Publisher, Date Month Year Published. Web. Date Month Year Accessed.
In APA you should just cite a general website article with the author.
By the way, to make sure your citation is made in the proper way – use online citation generator tools, which are able help with the formatting style
How to cite a quote in an essay
According to MLA, you when citing a quote you should omit quotation marks, start it with the new line, use double spacing and include the citation after the punctuation ends. And in APA you should just include the last name of the author, the year and also the page number.
That is it 🙂