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How to Read a Citation

A guide to help you figure out how to decipher a citation, in any style!

Citation Manuals

There are a number of citation manuals, which are used by the various academic disciplines. Some of the common citation manuals are:

Different style manual guidelines may arrange the elements of a citation in different ways. This is because each discipline places a different value on the different elements in a citation. When in doubt about how to create your citation, check your style manual. If you are not sure of which style manual to use, ask your professor which one he or she prefers.


In the following sections, you will see examples of the different types of citations you may encounter.

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