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Citing Sources

At TCC, three citation styles are commonly used. 
Always check with the instructor to find out which style to use.









APA (American Psychological Association​​​)


APA ​Guide (pdf)

APA Guide for Health Care Programs (.pdf)

APA is used primarily in psychology, sociology, business, education, and the sciences. APA_2012 Sample Essay.pdfAPA_2012 Sample Essay.pdf. APA uses parenthetical [in-text] citations (author, date).  A sample annotated bibliography (.pdf) is available. 


Take the TCC APA Interactive Tutorial, or enjoy the APA online flash tutorial.








MLA (Modern Language Association)


MLA Guide-2016-2017.pdfMLA Guide-2016-2017.pdf


MLA is used primarily in English and the humanities.  MLA also uses parenthetical [in-text] citations, (author, page). 

MLA Sample Paper 2016.pdfMLA Sample Paper 2016.pdf 

A sample annotated bibliography MLA format is available.

MLA Annotated Bibliography 2016-1017.pdfMLA Annotated Bibliography 2016-1017.pdf

More information can be found on the MLA Research Guide.









Turabian, based on the Chicago Manual of Style (CMS)

Turabian/Chicago Guide(.pdf​)

Turabian is used primarily in history and economics. CMS and Turabian use either footnotes or endnotes rather then parenthetical notations. A sample annotated bibliography in Turabian format is available. annotaturabian.pdf  

Writing Center Sample Turabian paper.Turabian Sample  Endnotes  ~ Turabian Sample 2012 Footnotes_ADA.docxTurabian Sample  Footnotes​  ~ Turabian Sample  Endnotes (.pdf) ~ Turabian Sample  Footnotes (.pdf)



 Other Formats

Other formats for specialization - use only at instructor's direction​
AP Style


AMA - American Medical Association, 10th edition



CSE - Council of Science Editors  [Formerly Council of Biology Editors]


APSA - The Style Manual for Political Science   .  Washington, DC: American Political Science Association, 2002. examples from  Saint Mary's University  & University of Wisconsin-Madison


AP - Associated Press Style  -  "provides guidelines for news writing. Many newspapers, magazines and public relations offices across the United States use AP style. . . .  a basic knowledge of AP style is considered essential to those who want to work in print journalism". Purdue Owl.





The TCC Library has available handouts for APA, MLA and Turabian/Chicago formats, composed of examples using actual library resources available to students.

Each of the guides contain several sections:

  • The first section shows examples of brief citations for quotes and paraphrasing within the text of the written paper. 
  • The second section gives examples of full citations to be listed at the end of the paper. 
  • The third section contains a sample list, called a Bibliography or Works Cited page.
Research is the process of finding and organizing information synthesized from a variety of resources; information extracted from traditional books and magazines, from movies, TV and radio, newspapers, computer web sites and of course from people. Information found from only one source may be biased, misleading or incomplete. To insure accuracy of your findings, many instructors will suggest you use a variety of both sources and formats.

As you are writing your paper, document the facts and quotes you obtained in your research process. Direct quotes, or copying word-for-word , is acceptable provided you first, put the quoted words within quotation marks, i.e. "quoted words," and second, provide a brief in-text citation.

This alerts the reader those were not your thoughts or words and indicates the origin of the quote.

An occasional direct quote is useful; using a 'string of pearls', or too many direct quotes to fill up space, is to be avoided by paraphrasing, re-writing the ideas and thoughts into your own words. Instructors prefer paraphrasing, as it demonstrates your understanding of the ideas and concepts and ability to restate them. Even when paraphrasing, citations are still included to indicate the original source of the ideas presented.

In an academic research paper, you, the writer, are to identify the sources of your information in such a way that the reader (instructor) can retrace your research footsteps and locate those same sources. The necessary information is a citation, and will allow the reader to locate a copy of the same resource, magazine article, edition of a book, or website, etc. The citations must be constructed with consistency, to easily provide the reader all the necessary identification information.

​TCC Library has many handouts available to assist students in their research .

 Among the most popular are:

Copies of the following publications are available in the TCC Library

  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers 

    7th edition, 2009, MLA, New York 
  • Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association 

    6th edition, 2010, (2nd printing) APA, Washington, D. C. 
  • Chicago Manual of Style
    16th edition, 2010, University of Chicago Press. 
  • A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations
    Kate L. Turabian, 8th edition, 2013, University of Chicago Press, Chicago    

The Research Paper Guide, prepared by the TCC Writing Center Staff, available at both the Writing Center and the Library, provides more detailed information on how to write an academic paper. Writing Center staff will "discuss with you the focus, organization, and development of your paper; we also can help you improve your sentence structure, grammar, and punctuation."


 Web Resources


 ​Many web sites provide student research assistance. The following recommended web sites were selected as useful sources of citation examples and style guides for college students.   



A free, easy-to-use Firefox extension to help you collect, manage, and cite your research sources. Demo video. Lives right where you do your work—in the web browser itself.

A subscription program with some free research tools. Try NoodleBib Express for help with citations for print and online sources
Internet Public Library's comprehensive and popular site. The IPL is an educational initiative of the University of Michigan School of Information.
by Andrew Harnack and Eugene Kleppinger, 2010, Bedford/ St. Martins Publishers 
A superb web site, providing detailed examples of APA, MLA, Chicago/Turabian, and other formats
Recommended links to research by academic topic areas  
2012 American Psychological Association, the official web site of the APA
FAQ's  MLA's official web site, with examples
University of Chicago
2009, International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, includes links to a variety of documentation formats
2014 Purdue University Online Writing Lab 
Through interpretation of "electronic gaps" in Turabian / CMS by Maurice Crouse Department of History, The University of Memphis. Numerous examples for internet and database sources, 2011
Duke University, 2014 
APA and MLA Formats, Troy State University, 2013, Troy State University  
Global Campus Library 
Capitol Community College, Hartford, CT 2009 
William Strunk Jr. 
A classic writing guide for college students, the full-text Strunk on-line 


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