Skip to Main Content
College of San Mateo Library
Research Help

Citation Sources

The reason for citing your sources is to give credit to those authors whose ideas you used in your research. Even when you do not quote directly from another work, if reading that source contributed to the ideas presented in your paper, you should include it in your bibliography. If you do not cite the source, you may be guilty of plagiarism. Plagiarism is using the ideas and writings of others and representing them as your own.

The two most common guides for citing sources are MLA (Modern Language Association, commonly used in the humanities) and APA (American Psychological Association, commonly used in the social sciences and sciences). Ask your professor which style he or she prefers.

Citation Generators

Generate and save a bibliography in MLA or APA format.

NoodleTools Express
Basic citation generator - no account required.

Citation Examples

MLA Style

CSM Library Research Guide - MLA Style (8th edition)
MLA Citation Guide (8th edition)
MLA Sample Works Cited Page (8th edition)
What are Parenthetical Citations?

APA Style

CSM Library Research Guide - APA Style (6th edition)
APA References Format
Sample "References" Page (APA)

Avoiding Plagiarism

Combating Plagiarism - CQ Researcher
Definition of Plagiarism - College of San Mateo