There are many standard citation formats.  Use the form recommended by the instructor of each class.  However, humanities courses usually are asked to style according to MLA (Modern Language Association) guidelines. Students in science and research fields, meanwhile, are often encouraged to follow the APA (American Psychological Association) guidelines. In college, the primary reason for using a standardized reference format like the MLA or APA is so that professional peers, researchers, professors, and other academic readers can easily understand the syntax and easily check the citations.

Why must you use APA Citations and provide References at the end?

This is vital for academic writing, otherwise copying from the internet or elsewhere without stating the source is the offence of plagiarism. Your work receives a ZERO mark, no appeals for plagiarism are granted. A second offence is another ZERO mark as well as other negative consequences from the school principal. See the Academic Honesty Policy signed upon registration. 

You add a CITATION in your writing immediately where you discuss an idea that you copied or found, or any data or statistics that you are discussing. If you copied the exact words, you use quotation marks “copied material “and then provide the citation.

Here is a short sample of writing including proper citations from a psychology paper’s introduction. Citations have been marked in BOLD so you can see them, but you should not bold them in the writing. Note that only one source was used in this introduction, but there could have been more.


Online Communication Definitions Effect on Relationship Research

Numerous studies have been conducted on various facets of Internet relationships, focusing on the levels of intimacy, closeness, different communication modalities, and the frequency of use of CMC. However, contradictory results are suggested within this research mostly because only certain aspects of CMC are investigated, for example, email only. Cummings, Butler, and Kraut (2002) suggest that FtF interactions are more effective than CMC (read: email) in creating feelings of closeness or intimacy, while other studies suggest the opposite. In order to understand how both online (Internet) and offline (non-Internet) relationships are affected by CMC, all forms of CMC should be studied. This paper examines Cummings et al.’s research against other CMC research to propose that additional research be conducted to better understand how online communication effects relationships. In Cummings et al.’s (2002) summary article reviewing three empirical studies on online social relationships, it was found that CMC, especially email, was less effective than FtF contact in creating and maintaining close social relationships. Two of the three reviewed studies focusing on communication in non-Internet and Internet relationships mediated by FtF, phone, or email modalities found that the frequency of each modality’s use was significantly linked to the strength of the particular relationship (Cummings et al., 2002). The strength of the relationship was predicted best by FtF and phone communication, as participants rated email as an inferior means of maintaining personal relationships as compared to FtF and phone contacts (Cummings et al., 2002).


Cummings, J. N., Butler, B., & Kraut, R. (2002). The quality of online social relationships. Communications of the ACM, 45(7), 103-108. 

General Rules of the References page (APA style) 

  • This page should list all the works that have contributed ideas and information to your essay/ PowerPoint presentation/ blog/ project/ assignment etc. (through direct quotation, summary or paraphrase). The source for all IMAGES you inserted from the internet must also be given in Reference list.
  • It must provide full publication information so that others will easily be able to locate the same sources.
  • List sources alphabetically, according to the surname of the author.
  • If a source has no author, alphabetize it by its title (not THE or A/AN).
  • With a source with multiple authors – the first name in the list is the only one with the last name first – all others are first name then last name.
  • Do not number entries.
  • Indent every line of a citation after line #1 in each reference (a hanging indent).
  • Double space all citations found on the list of references.

General Example:

APA Writing Sample, (2010). California State University- Northridge.

Retrieved on September 15, 2020 from

Note:  MLA Works Cited and Bibliography are not the same. In Works Cited you only list items you have actually cited. In a Bibliography such as the APA References, you list all of the material you have consulted in preparing your project or essay whether or not you have actually cited, summarized, or paraphrased the work.

This VIDEO also shows how to use APA style for this type of assignment.

Sample References done in APA style:

Here is a list of sample references for a few of the most commonly used resources. 

To find specific citation rules for all other types of resources, go to Concordia University’s site, search there for other examples:

NOTE:  The examples here are single-spaced for efficiency.  They should be double-spaced.

A Book with author or corporate author

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of work: Capital letter also for subtitle. Location: Publisher.

Calfee, R. C., & Valencia, R. R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

* Note: For "Location," you should always list the city and the state using the two letter postal abbreviation without periods (New York, NY).

*When a book has multiple authors, order the authors in the same way they are presented in the book. 



Periodicals include magazines, newspapers, and scholarly journals.

*APA style dictates that authors are named last name followed by initials; publication year goes between parentheses, followed by a period. The title of the article is in sentence-case, meaning only the first word and proper nouns in the title are capitalized. The periodical title is run in title case, and is followed by the volume number which, with the title, is also italicized. If a DOI has been assigned to the article that you are using, you should include this after the page numbers for the article. If no DOI has been assigned and you are accessing the periodical online, use the URL of the website from which you are retrieving the periodical.

Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (Year). Title of article. Title of Periodical,volume number(issue number), pages.

Henry, W. A., III. (1990, April). Making the grade in today's schools. Time, 135, 28-31.


An Entire Website

When citing an entire website, follow the format below.

Last, F. M. (Year, Month Date Published). Article title. Retrieved from URL

Cain, K. (2012, June 29). The Negative effects of Facebook on communication. Social Media Today RSS.  Retrieved from


A Single Webpage

Individual webpages and documents hosted online are cited similarly to print content. Note, however, that the URL is typically included at the end of the entry. The URL may, at the author's discretion, be left as an active link. Include additional information (like translators, editors, first edition publication date, and so on) as you would for print sources.

Author, A. A. & Author B. B. (Date of publication). Title of page [Format description when necessary]. Retrieved from

Eco, U. (2015). How to write a thesis [PDF file]. (Farina C. M. & Farina F., Trans.) Retrieved  from (Original work published 1977).


A Blog Post

Last, F. M. (Year Month Date Published). Article title [Type of blog post]. Retrieved from URL. 

Kirschenbaum, M. (2017, January 4). 10 ways to spot a fake news article [Blog post].Retrieved from /10-ways-to-spot-a-fake-news-article/


Online Images

Photographer, F.M. (Photographer). (Year, Month Date of Publication). Title of Photograph [digital image]. Retrieved from URL 

O’Shea, P. (Photographer). (2010, August 29). Rescued hedgehog [digital image]. Retrieved from

Last modified: Thursday, 30 November 2023, 11:30 AM