A bibliographic citation, the convention normally used to acknowledge a work paraphrased or quoted in a paper, should contain the basic information needed to locate the item.
There are different formats for citing books, journal articles, chapters in books, dissertations, pamphlets, videocassettes, and many other formats. This box focuses on the generic format used to cite books, journal articles, and book chapters.
Book citations can be identified based on the publication information included, which includes place of publication, publisher, and year:
Citations to journal articles can be identified based on the publication information included, which includes volume number, date and page numbers:
Book chapter citations can be identified by the presence of two titles: the title of the chapter and the title of the book. Two names may be listed as well; the author of the chapter and the editor. The same publication information that appears in a book citation, place of publication, publisher, and year, will also appear here:
APA, Chicago, and MLA are the three most widely used citation styles:
To see a side-by-side comparison of APA, Chicago, and MLA, including a chart of all citation guidelines for each style, see the Citation Style Chart.