APA Style Workshop

Do you need to use APA style for an essay or other assignment? Come to this workshop to learn more about APA style as well as have a chance to improve the APA style in your own work. Bring a current assignment to practice on!

Location: Hoover Library Board Room

APA Style: Nothing to be afraid of!

For anyone who is taking or will ever take a Psychology, Sociology, Economics, Business, or Criminology class: read this carefully!

Think back to high school and the papers that you had to write. Most likely, those papers were written in MLA format. Not only did your high school teach you MLA format, but they drilled it into your head! Now you’re in college and you know that there is more than one style of paper. Suddenly, your professor assigns a paper that needs to be written in APA format!

*cue mini freakout*

Courtesy of www.gifsoup.com

Don’t freak out! It’s not nearly as scary as it looks…it’s just different. APA Style is used in the social sciences and almost everyone, at one point or another, will use it.

Being in the Psychology department, I have to use APA format ALL THE TIME. Here is a little “how to” guide and some of my best tips on how to tackle APA format:

  • You must have a title page! The title page should have: the title of paper, the writer’s name, and the school (each on a different line). This should be centered and be placed about halfway down the page.
  • Make sure you have an appropriate header. The header should have the title of the paper at the top left and the page number (nothing else, just the numeral) at the top right. HOWEVER, on the first page, there should be the label “Running head:” before the title in the header.
  • If the paper requires an abstract, it should be placed on a separate piece of paper right behind the title page.
  • Some papers will have subheadings within the paper; however, that is not always required. Make sure you check with your professor and the rubric for the assignment to find out if they’re required.
  • At the end of the paper, there should be a “References” page containing all of the sources that you cited in the paper.

    Sample APA title page courtesy of http://owl.purdue.edu

  • Everything is double-spaced! (Including title page and references page)
  • In-text citations should be at the end of the sentence. They should contain: (Author’s last name, year published, p. #) ← in that format, too! Don’t forget to put the period after the in-text citation!
  • Last but certainly not least…the bibliography. Here is the basic bibliography for APA format (formatted correctly):

Author’s last name, first initial. middle initial. (year published). Title of book. City of publication, State: Publisher.

Just fill in the information for your source and you’re good to go!

(Note: Some types of sources may require slightly different formatting. Please make sure that you use the correct format.)

**Before you finish, double check to make sure you remembered to put periods at the end of every bibliography citation. This may seem tedious but so many people forget them or their fingers move so quickly over the keyboard that they forget it.

If you need to use a different bibliography format or are still unsure about your citation, check out The Purdue OWL online (https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/2/10/). If you’re still struggling with APA Style, make an appointment to come see one of the writing center tutors for help!!

Courtesy of http://owl.english.purdue.edu

Adrienne, peer tutor

Cite When You Write!

Have you ever been marked down on your papers for how you cited or failed to cite your sources? Does the mention of citations or working within the MLA style make you cringe? Have you used some awesome sources in you paper but are at a loss for how to cite them?

If so, this blog post is for you!

I’m going to lay out some helpful tips for citing sources so that instead of feeling frustrated and angry…



…you can be proud of what you have accomplished!



Today I’m going to talk about how to cite a website in MLA, because MLA is potentially the most common citation style–and websites can be frustrating because they all seem so different. (If you need to cite in APA or CMS, here are some really helpful links: the Chicago Manual of Style and the Purdue Lab.)

We know that citations can seem confusing with all the different styles and rules for formatting but citation is mostly about finding information and plugging it into a formula. It can be tedious but here are some tricks that can help you finish up your stellar paper:

  • Take note of the date you access websites as you do your research.
  • Take note of the author or editor, the article title or website title, the website sponsor (who makes the website possible) and the most recent date it has been updated.

Now that we have the preliminary steps out of the way, we can put all of the information we have gathered into an MLA citation. This is how we order all of the information:

  1. the author or editor
  2. the article title or website title
  3. the website sponsor
  4. the most recent date
  5. the medium of publication (which is always Web when referring to any information found on the internet)
  6. the date of access.

For example:

Fraunheim, Ed. “Stop Reading This Headline and Get Back to Work.” CNET News.com.

CNET Networks, 11 July 2005. Web. 17 Feb. 2009.

Based on the information you have gathered, all you need to do is insert it into this formula! You have done most of the work already, so…

tumblr keep calm


Citing an Entire Website

Felluga, Dino. Guide to Literary and Critical Theory. Purdue U, 28 Nov. 2003. Web. 10 May


Citing a Page on a Website (like a blog post or a recipe)

“How to Make Vegetarian Chili.” eHow. Demand Media, n.d. Web. 24 Feb. 2009.

  • (List the author, if known, followed by the information covered above for entire Web sites.)

More handy tips:

  • If you can’t find some aspect of the information, the formula stays the same and you just insert what you do have.
  • Italicize the website title.
  • The page title or article title is in quotation marks.
  • Make sure you pay attention to the punctuation!
  • Always double space when using MLA.
  • The first line of each entry is at the left margin; extra lines are indented ½ an inch.
  • You don’t have to include the URL of the website unless your professor asks you to!
  • If no publisher name is available then use n.p. and if no publishing date is given then use n.d. (as illustrated above).

Now that you know how to better cite your information, you are on the way to even greater success with your writing!



If you have any questions about citations or formatting or just need some help brainstorming, your friendly writing center is always here to help!

-Sarah, peer tutor

How Easy IS EasyBib?

Ok, so nobody’s denying it: citations can be tricky, and students usually look for ways to make the works cited page as painless as possible. And that’s ok! But sometimes, we’re tempted to throw caution to the winds, pay a little visit to an automatic citation cite (like EasyBib or BibMe), and copy, click, paste, we’re done! Hurray!

Ok, maybe not hurray. Using an automatic citation cite can be risky.

Research: the leading cause of citation creation throughout the nation.                                         (Image from http://www.calgrip.ca.gov/?navid=28)

To be clear, there is nothing wrong with using an automatic citation site to HELP you create  your citations, but (and there’s the big but) these cites should only be a guideline. You should ALWAYS check the citations for correct information and up-to-date format before turning them in.

Don’t have a handy dandy MLA citation guide laying around? Wondering how to check your APA? Not sure how to begin with Chicago? We can help with that!

Presenting our Writing Center favorite, the Purdue Owl Research and Citation Resource!

This gem of a cite is not only an excellent tool for checking your citations, but it also can help you cite sources that are unusual or not covered on automatic citation websites. It covers MLA, APA, and Chicago citation styles, and it even shows you how to format in-text citations, footnotes, and paper headers.

Here’s the MLA guide,

Here’s the APA guide,

And here’s the Chicago guide.

Sometimes, when you do research on the Hoover Library search engines, such as Academic OneFile, the sources you access will have citations already created for you.

Check these too! 

Even these citations are not accurate 100% of the time. Basically, you should be sure to check any and every citation you did not handcraft yourself. And sometimes, it’s even good to check those too! Better safe than plagiarizing!

All this being said, you CAN still use these automatic citation sites and provided complete citations. As long as you check them, you’re in good shape! Here are some of our favorite citation sites:

Son of Citation Machine

Citation Needed
Oh, yeah, and don’t forget that most teachers won’t count Wikipedia as a legitimate source. If you find information you want to use on a Wikipedia page, look to the sources at the bottom of the page. This list will refer you to the works that the Wikipedia page cited; these are great sources to use in your paper (and, of course, check these citations too)!

So remember, its important to cite, but it also matters HOW you cite!

Encouragement Graphic #24

If this guy says it, it must be true!
(Image from http://www.commentsyard.com/you-can-do-it/)


Sammi, peer tutor