Research, Write, Publish

Citation Guide

Citing the resources consulted and quoted in a research paper is necessary in order to avoid plagiarism.

There are many citation style guides in use today. Some are used specifically for certain subjects or in publications of certain organizations. The most commonly used are MLA (from Modern Language Association, used in the humanities), APA (from American Psychological Association, used in the social sciences) and the Chicago manual (and the simplified version by Turabian, used primarily in history). Always check first with your instructor or publisher to see which style is preferred.

This guide provides basic guidelines and examples to frequently asked citation questions from the three major style guides, plus links to websites with more detailed information for each. A separate page listing some of the better-known subject-specific style guides is also provided, as well as links to formatting and submission guides for UA dissertations and theses. Finally, information on popular citation management software is given below.

Other General Citation Guides

OWL (Online Writing Lab) Research & Citation Resources (Purdue University)
Includes detailed APA, Chicago, and MLA guides.

How to Cite and Organize Information (Ohio State University Libraries)
Covers APA, Chicago, CSE, MLA, and Turabian styles.


Software for Creating Citations and Bibliographies 

Compare features of citation software

EndNote/EndNote Web/Mendeley/RefWorks/Zotero Features Comparison Chart 
(University of Wisconsin Libraries)


RefWorks is a web-based citation manager program available to UA faculty, staff, and students. It allows you to import citations from many of our databases, or input them manually, and then create bibliographies automatically in the desired style format. (See a list of the available style formats supported by RefWorks.)

Write-n-Cite is a related software program that can be downloaded and installed from the RefWorks site. This program works within Microsoft Word as you write your paper to allow you to access your citations stored in RefWorks and to automatically create footnotes and a bibliography. See the RefWorks User Quick Start Guide and our RefWorks Guide for further information.

From Summon, you can export citations directly to RefWorks using the Cite button and Export As.. drop-down menu.

EndNote Web

A bibliographic management program that will help you:

  • Collect and import references from online databases.
  • Organize your references for your research topics and papers.
  • Create a formatted bibliography for your paper or cite references while you write.

From Summon, you can export citations directly to EndNote using the Cite button and Export As.. drop-down menu.

All UA staff, students, and faculty are eligible for a free EndNote Web account.

EndNote Web is similar to RefWorks. Some differences are as follows:


EndNote Web


Maximum number of records per account



Number of citation format styles



Ability to create custom citation format styles?



Direct export from Web of Knowledge databases?



Direct export from Ovid databases?



Ability to attach files, such as pdfs, to user account?



For more information, see:


EndNote Web Help

EndNote Web Tutorials



A free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research, collaborate with others online, and discover the latest research. Software must be installed on a personal computer or you can download the Android app or iPad/iPhone app for Mendeley.

Through the UA institutional edition, you can:
1. Manage references and citations
2. Search and discover content: Researchers can discover what research articles are trending and which ones have the greatest impact among Mendeley users by subject.
3. Read and annotate articles: Allows users to mark-up text and take notes.
4. Add and organize papers: Researchers can upload the pdfs. You can also sync across multiple devices (iPad, iPad mini, desktop, etc.).
5. Share and collaborate with peers: Researchers may create work groups of up to five people which will allow users to collaborate across country and discover additional content.



A free, easy-to-use Firefox extension to help you collect, manage, cite, and share your research sources. Although not currently installed on UA library computers, it can be by opening Firefox and going to, then selecting the download button. If you have set up an account in Zotero and synced your library on their server, you can also view (but not modify) your library from any computer through your online account. Another option for using your Zotero library on multiple computers is to use portable Firefox with Zotero on a USB flash drive. For more information, see the Zotero Quick Start Guide.


Create bibliographies and download them to Word, using current APA, MLA, and Chicago/Turabian styles. Available for 59 different types of materials. This is free, but more advanced options are available by setting up an individual subscription to the premium version.

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MLA Guide   |  APA Guide   |  Chicago Guide   |  Subject Specific Citation Guides

Last modified: December 15, 2015