Citing Online Sources

| No TrackBacks
citation_needed.jpgAs the Internet becomes more omnipresent, students use more and more academic resources online. Conducting research online can be daunting, whether you grew up hunting and pecking on a typewriter or had your own website by age nine. How do you tell which sources are reliable? And how do you incorporate them into a paper or essay? We're here to help! We previously blogged about how to use Wikipedia for research, and this post will cover how to cite Thinkwell and other online sources.

First, it's important to know that although certain information is always important, there's no universally correct way to cite any source. There are several different style manuals, each of which has its own way of organizing information in citations. Two of the most common styles are American Psychological Association (APA) and Modern Language Association (MLA). APA is usually used in social sciences, whereas MLA is usually used in the humanities, but you should use whichever one your instructor prefers. Here's a guide to APA and MLA citation styles for online sources:

APA

The APA format for citing a website in your "works cited" page is as follows:

Author. (Publication date). Document title. Retrieved from URL

For example, to cite the lecture on chemical digestion from Thinkwell Biology, you might write the following in your "works cited" page (I put extra information in the "document title" section because Thinkwell is set up in such a way that I can't provide a more detailed URL):

Thinkwell. (2000). Biology: Animal systems and homeostasis; The digestive system;
The beginning of chemical digestion. Retrieved from http://www.thinkwell.com

Within the body of a paper, the APA format for parenthetical citation is:

(Author, year, page number if applicable)

The parenthetical citation in your paper would look something like this:

Chemical digestion is an important part of the digestive system (Thinkwell, 2000).

MLA


The MLA format for citing a website in your "works cited" page is as follows:

Author. "Document Title." Website Title. Name of organization running the website, date of publication. Web. Date of access.

For example, to cite the lecture on weak acids from Thinkwell Chemistry, you might write the following:

Thinkwell. "Weak Acids." Thinkwell Chemistry. Thinkwell, 2000. Web. 15 Jul 2011.
<http://www.thinkwell.com>.

Within the body of a paper, the MLA format for parenthetical citation is:

(Author)

The parenthetical citation in your paper would look something like this:

Strong acids are more dissociated than weak acids (Thinkwell).

Still confused? Check out the Purdue Online Writing Lab, BibMe, or Citation Machine for more help with bibliographies and citations. Citing Thinkwell in a research paper will be a breeze!

Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL: http://blog.thinkwell.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb.cgi/275

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lauren published on July 18, 2011 2:11 PM.

Modeling Multiple Dimensions: The Lorenz Manifold was the previous entry in this blog.

Student Activities: A Trip to the Zoo is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.