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Utilizing MLA & APA in Essays, Term or Research Papers

The format of your essay is not only about its content and organization, but also about the format of the paper according to what was the specified document style. A variety of formats are utilized in education. Arts and humanities subjects tend to use the MLA (Modern Language Association) style whereas APA or (American Psychological Association) is more frequently used for social sciences subjects. Both the MLA and APA have common requirements however as well as some common features. The MLA style includes (i) in-text citation as well as (ii) Work/s Cited. The in-text quote has a two part method that is both signal phrases and parenthetical citations. The signal phrase introduces quotes and establishes any source's credibility. For example; (A) ‘Shakespeare was a great playwright' OR (B) ‘According to Bradley, a respected Shakespeare critic and scholar, Shakespeare was a great playwright. ' You will note that the first is a generality whereas the second points right to the credentials of the source you're citing. The parenthetical or bracketed citation refers to both author and page number/s of the source. For example; ‘Shakespeare was a great playwright (Bradley, 33)'. Should you make reference to the author in a signal phrase, then the parenthetical citation would only include the page number. Note that the period is placed following the parenthetical citation rather than at the end of the quote. The ‘Works Cited' page will list all the sources you used in your text and should be alphabetized. Begin with surnames of authors but if you don't have author's names, make reference to the title of the text. Your list should start on a new page but at the end of the document with each entry indented. Your surname and the page number should also be on each page. The paper should be double-spaced and every new paragraph indented. The APA also has in-text citations as well as a list of sources which is entitled ‘References' at the end of the paper. The in-text citations should contain the author's surname and year of publication of the cited text. When an author isn't mentioned you should refer to both the author and the year in the parenthetical citation. You would also make reference to the page number preceded by the letter p. or pp. For example, (Author, Year, pp. ). The References list goes at the end of your document on a new page and is an alphabetized list of author's surnames. The list should be double-spaced and each of the entries separated by a period and single-space. Your title page should consist of a running head, paper title, the writer's name and your college's name. MLA and APA are the most frequently used format styles for both school and college essays.

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