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LIS1000: Module 2

Lesson 1

Module 2, Lesson 1

Module 2, Lesson 1

The information literate student accesses needed information effectively and efficiently. (Standard 2)

  • Understands resources for retrieving information
  • Identifies the purpose and audience of various types of information resources (FL College Outcome 2.1A)
  • Understands how library catalogs, databases, and the Internet are organized (FL College Outcome 2.1B)
  • Selects and prioritizes appropriate resources (FL College Outcome 2.1C)

Lesson Objectives
On completion of this lesson, students should be able to:

  • Understand organization structures of various sources (Internet, Library Catalog, etc.)
  • Recognize different types of resources
  • Understand the purpose and audience of those sources
  • Select appropriate sources for research

Lesson Content

With so many different types of information available, particularly with our digital environment, finding reliable information can be very frustrating. This lesson is designed to break down the purpose of different information types, and who they were designed for. For example, CINAHL is a database designed for nursing students, and is not needed by most students writing an English paper.

Students need to understand that the Internet is not necessarily the best or even the first place to search for information. Different information types are better than others for specific types of research.

The Internet

The Internet has a wealth of knowledge available to anyone with access. The problem with this is that anyone with access can place false information on the internet. There are no guidelines in place on the general web for information accuracy. This is why search engines are so dangerous. A general search on Google for Martin Luther King will bring up a Wikipedia article, the Nobel Peace Prize website, and a link to www.martinlutherking.org.  Wikipedia cannot be considered accurate because anyone on the free web can edit the page. The Nobel site is generally held as reliable, but the www.martinlutherking.org site cannot be. It sounds good, due to the fact that it is an organization page, but if you look closely, the page is hosted by Stormfront, which is owned by a white-supremacist organization. They would not be expected to offer reliable information about a black civil rights activist.

This is why students need to learn the difference between .com, .edu, .gov, and .org websites.

  • .com - originally commercial, but can be used for anything as long as it is paid for.
  • .edu - used only by accredited post-secondary institutions
  • .gov and .us - owned by the United States Government
  • .org - owned by organization-however, it does not matter what type of organization.

Library Catalog

The library catalog, available at your college library website, offers access to all items located in the physical and digital library. This includes, but is not limited to: books, eBooks, audiovisual materials, reference materials, reserve materials, and the databases. The catalog organizes items in the library by order of the Library of Congress. A good resource for understanding this method of cataloging is the Library of Congress website: http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/lcco/

When searching through the collection, students must realize that a book does not necessarily have factual information, although most research is designed to find proof of a thesis.

Students can request items they locate in the library catalog to be held for pick-up. Most libraries have many resources that are available online, through the library databases.

Library Databases

College libraries offer a wealth of information through the databases. Ebooks, journals, newspapers, and magazines are available from anywhere with an internet connection and a login. These databases make the search for peer-reviewed articles incredibly easy. The databases are so involved, it is very easy for students to get lost. They need to practice navigating them. They need to know how to search for full-text articles, and peer-reviewed articles. Publication dates may be very important to their research. Most databases have the same general types of interfaces, through EBSCO, Gale, Wilson, JSTOR, etc. A basic search of any database can be very confusing, if the student has no practice with good search practices.


Activity

Activity 1

1. Divide students into groups of 2-3.

2. Assign each group a type of resource and a subject. The types available are print/electronic books, print journals/magazines, and print/electronic newspapers. The instructor might want to assign specific websites for review. Some ideas for databases by type:

  • Mostly book sources (Biography Resource Center, Literature Resource Center, Oxford Reference Online)
  • Mostly journal sources (JSTOR, Wilson, CINAHL, CQ Researcher)
  • Newspaper sources (Newsbank, New York Times Historical)

3. Each group should explore the assigned resource and subject by trying to find the source using all three finding aids (OPAC, databases, and Internet). Students determine the audience, content, source type, and location of material being explored using the handout (see Resource Type handout - mod1_less1_handout.docx).

4. Each group will then present the information to the rest of the class.

5. Discuss the different places one finds information about the authors or producers of the information (e.g., books-in the front matter, author credentials, forward; internet-an about page, domain name).

6. Discuss how you may access all three major information sources from all three major finding aids, but some lend themselves better to particular aids (e.g. you can find more e-books in the OPAC than the internet; you can find more newspapers on the internet than in the OPAC).

7. Discuss the information cycle and the importance of using all three finding aids to get the best information available (use the internet for most current; use OPAC to find essential, foundational knowledge; use databases to find research studies, etc.).
e.g., books-in the front matter, author credentials, forward; internet-an about page, domain name).

Activity 2

  1. Give students a list of various library resources: the types available are print/electronic books, print journals/magazines, and print/electronic newspapers. The instructor might want to assign specific websites for review. Some ideas for databases by type:
    • Mostly book sources (Biography Resource Center, Literature Resource Center, Oxford Reference Online)
    • Mostly journal sources (JSTOR, Wilson, CINAHL, CQ Researcher)
    • Newspaper sources (Newsbank, New York Times Historical)
  2. Have students locate the best methods for retrieving these resources and give an explanation of why, by worksheet or quiz. Sample activity matrix: Students will record information about each category of source they retrieved.  This could be used to create an annotated bibliography, or as the basis for an oral presentation. See mod2_less 1_matrix.docx

Lesson 2

Module 2, Lesson 2

Module 2, Lesson 2

The information literate student accesses needed information effectively and efficiently. (Standard 2)

  • Develops and applies effective search strategies (Performance Indicator 2.2)
    • Determines the subject discipline and types of resources necessary for the topic (FL College outcome 2.2A)
    • Produces appropriate keywords, terms, controlled vocabulary and phrases for successful searching (FL College outcome 2.2B)
    • Develops and applies appropriate search strategies (FL College outcome 2.2C)
    • Assess the quality, quantity and relevance of search results. Revises search strategy, consulting librarians and resources beyond the library collection as necessary. (FL College outcome 2.2D)

Lesson Objectives
On completion of this lesson, students should be able to:

  • Students will identify topic specific sources
  • Students will assemble a list of topic specific keywords, terms and phrases
  • Students will apply search strategies; analyze search results and present alternative search strategies

Lesson Content

Lesson Topic 1: Types of Information Resources

After reviewing the Information Cycle, consider the types of resources that will be most appropriate for your topic. Library-based print and electronic resources and free Internet resources may be used to access a wide variety of types of information.  You may be required to use scholarly or peer-reviewed publications in addition to popular resources.  Depending on your research topic, primary source documents may be essential.  The discipline area in which your search topic falls may require that the information be current.  Finally, you may need to access information from a variety of different formats such as print, electronic audiovisual, graphical or raw data.

Books and eBooks: Searching the online catalog: As you search the online catalog for books and material in alternative formats, consider the following questions: Approximately how many titles are in the online catalog on your topic?  What, if anything, can you tell from the listed titles, dates and authors? Are there subheadings displayed for the topic? Are cross-references or alternative headings displayed for the topic? Will your local library be able to support your topic, or will you need to get material from other libraries through interlibrary loan?

Interlibrary Loan: Your local college or public library may offer interlibrary loan services that allow you to borrow materials located in remote library catalogs.  It may take a week or even longer to borrow material via interlibrary loan so begin your research early.  In addition, any student enrolled in a state institution of higher education in Florida has reciprocal borrowing privileges at all community college libraries and all state university libraries.

Databases: There will be many times when you will need to use online library resources instead.  These library 'databases' require you to use a password in order to see their content. The information found in these virtual library sources include e-books, full-text academic or scientific research journals, newspapers or magazine articles, government documents, and increasingly sound files, pod casts, and streaming videos.

Libraries pay large fees for these full-text resources and since the information is so costly, access is limited to registered students, faculty, or members of the library.  Some of these databases may be available only from computers located within libraries, but this is becoming increasingly rare. Most collections of sources (databases) are available to registered students, faculty or other library
members from any Internet-capable computer. 

The value of using these online library databases, is that they are designed by publishing companies and purchased by the library to support student assignments and topics. They tend to be more organized than information you find using a search tool like Google, and they are easier to document and cite for your professors. Often there are additional tools within the databases that assist with the research process as well.

Many subject areas are represented by these databases.  Most disciplines have one or more databases specifically dedicated to that discipline.  Other databases are more interdisciplinary in nature and provide coverage of all subject areas.  It is important to match your subject need with the coverage of the database.

Coverage dates of databases vary. That is to say, some databases provide full-text articles for the most recent 15 to 20 years; others include full-text for only the current year of information; others may contain information from over 100 years ago.  Again, matching your information need with the time coverage of the database is as important as it is to find the best subject database for your topic. Databases also contain different types of information. The following are typical of the type of information which can be found:

  • full-text periodical articles [this includes popular magazine articles, news, trade or professional articles and scholarly research articles]
  • full-text encyclopedic/reference sources [most of these essays are written by subject experts and provide excellent topic overviews]
  • full-text books or chapters of books [e-books]
  • government/primary documents; [congressional reports and laws]
  • images, audio clips or video clips; [streaming video, podcasts, music, etc]
  • statistical information
  • citations and/or abstracts of articles or books

Databases vary in how often they are updated. Most are updated frequently.  Newspaper databases will typically be updated on a daily basis while an encyclopedia database may be updated on an irregular basis or even a yearly basis. The more current your information need, the more important it is to use a database with a frequent update schedule. If you are researching a topic that has been in the news or over the last several weeks or months you may not need a database that is updated daily, but if you are working on a topic that is changing daily, you will definitely need a database that is updated frequently.

Databases retrieve results in a variety of ways.  The two most frequent ranking of results are chronologically by date, with the most recent records added to the database listed first (LIFO or Last In First Out), and by relevancy. I n a relevancy ranked search a statistical count is done on the number of times search terms appear in a record, how close search terms are to each other and how prominent search terms are in the record.  A record with a search term in the title of the record will be considered more relevant than one in which the search term appears in the body of the text. Many databases provide abstracts or summaries of records as well as the full-text of the record.  Take advantage of abstracts; by reading an abstract prior to reading the complete article, you will not only get an overview of the article but in some cases, you will realize that the article is not one which you need to read.

Most databases have retrieval capabilities integrated into the database.  You will frequently see PRINT, EMAIL and SAVE buttons.  Even if you regularly print or email records, it is a good idea to have a back-up of your research on a storage device.

Scholarly Information: Scholarly information will present original research findings and provide much more detail and usually a better understanding of a topic than will a popular or general interest publication.  In some cases, deciding what is a scholarly publication versus what is a popular publication may be easy, especially when considering print sources; in other cases it may be more difficult to make the distinction. Some of the distinguishing factors that are obvious in a print source (e.g., price, availability, etc.) will not be relevant for an electronic publication.  Look for clues to determine if information is scholarly or popular:

 

Scholarly Information

Popular Information

AUDIENCE

scholars, researchers, professors, students

general readers

APPEARANCE

attractive but also serious

colorful, eye-catching, engaging, lively, slick

ADVERTISEMENTS

few, if any, advertisements

many, colorful ads

PRODUCER

non-profit organizations, universities, individual faculty, professional associations

commercial organizations

AUTHOR

professionals, experts in the field, credentials provided

staff writers, journalists, usually not experts

CONTENT

original research, specific narrow focus

non-technical, informative,  entertaining, news oriented, opinions

LANGUAGE, STYLE

formal language, specialized jargon used, requires prior knowledge of the subject matter

easy to read, engaging

LENGTH

usually rather lengthy in order to provide in-depth analysis of a topic

usually short to medium in length, providing broader overview of topics

ILLUSTRATIONS

few illustrations, little or no color, will include appropriate research oriented tables, charts, and graphs

heavily illustrated, photographs, eye-catching

DOCUMENTATION

documentation, bibliographies, footnotes

very little documentation, if any

TIMELINESS

timeliness is not as important; thoroughness, originality, and in-depth coverage/analysis of a topic are more important than being on the cutting edge of a newsworthy topic

up-to-date

WORDS IN TITLE

titles may use language of the discipline; frequently words such as research or study will appear in the title

no specific words included or excluded; titles may be
cutesy or contain slang

Primary vs. Secondary
Depending on the general subject area or discipline of your research, primary sources may be a major focus. Primary sources take different forms depending on the discipline. In literature, a primary source is the novel, short story, poem, etc. Primary sources in history include laws, letters, oral histories, diaries, and newspaper articles on events. In science, primary sources include reports of original research. Primary sources tend to stand on their own and be first hand observations of an event. A secondary source is one which analyzes, critiques, reviews or explains a primary source.  They are often authored by people who were not present when the event occurred or the person under study was alive.  Many are written by scholars who have carefully studied the primary source and have drawn their own conclusions from it. One type of source is not, by nature, more or less reliable than the other.

Lesson Topic 2: Key Terms and Controlled Vocabulary

Begin by identifying the main concepts or key terms for your topic. By creating a list of keywords, you can increase your search capacity.  This enables you
to find more information on your topic.  Try to think of all the ways your topic could be described.  For example, if you are doing acid rain, you might also use words like pollution, air pollution, carbon dioxide levels, ozone depletion, etc.
Choose your keywords carefully.  Do not use a complete sentence or phrase as you do in spoken natural language.  Leave out minor words, such as articles ("a", "an", or "the"), and prepositional or verb phrases ("on...", "in...", or "going to").  Stick to the keywords, usually nouns or noun phrases that express the major concepts of your topic. For research on "College students who are binge drinkers are more likely to engage in risk taking behavior than students who are either moderate drinkers or who abstain", you might choose the nouns and noun phrases alcohol, alcoholic beverages, binge drinking, risk-taking behavior and college students as keywords.  For research on, "The implementation of V-chip technology to block violent or sexually explicit television content will lessen the incidences of school violence," you could use television, TV, V chip, school violence and children.

As you begin your search, you should write down all your search terms so you can decide which were effective and which were not.  You may find terms you wish to eliminate from your results list or terms you want to always appear in your results. To identify alternative keywords, use a thesaurus (Webster's Collegiate Thesaurus is available online), check the Library of Congress Subject Headings, a reference book available in most libraries, Internet subject directories may provide alternate keywords or related topics that you wouldn't necessarily think of on your own.

Information is organized into disciplines or subject areas.  The discipline or subject area in which your topic falls will have a bearing on the type of research you will do. Depending on the discipline area, the following considerations may be important:

  • One or more organizations may be responsible for the dissemination of information.
  • There may a standard terminology for the discipline.
  • There may be a standard index for the discipline.
  • Scholarly resources may be preferred over popular resources.
  • Primary resources may be preferred over secondary resources.
  • One or more of the following investigative methods may be preferred:
    • laboratory experiments
    • simulations
    • field work
    • interviews
    • surveys
    • statistical analysis
    • tests and measurements
    • original thought and analysis
    • current resources may be preferred over historical resources.

Lesson Topic 3: Search Strategies

Refining your keyword search string may help to narrow or direct your search so that you retrieve the most relevant results.  When results are relevant, they are on target or very close to the information being sought.  Complex search statements could be refined by adding words and characters such as Boolean operators, quotation marks to indicate exact phrases, truncation symbols, or field search limiters.

Boolean Searching
Boolean searching is based on a system of symbolic logic developed by George Boole, a 19th century English mathematician.  Most computer databases and Internet search engines support Boolean searches.  Boolean search techniques help reduce the number of irrelevant documents in the search results. The power of Boolean searching is based on combinations of keywords with connecting terms called Boolean operators. The three basic operators are the terms AND, OR, and NOT.  Many Internet search engines replace Boolean operators with symbols, for example + for AND, - for NOT. The examples above illustrate general topics expressed with just two keywords.  Actual search strings, which express complex topic ideas, may consist of several keywords and combinations of Boolean operators. The thesis statement "Automobile air bags are not safe for children" might result in the search string: automobiles AND air bags AND children AND safety

Most databases and major search engines support complex Boolean searches. If you have a complex search using more than one operator, you can nest your search terms, using parentheses. Search terms and operators included in parentheses will be searched first, then terms and operators outside the parentheses. A search for:(ADD OR attention deficit disorder) AND college students will search for documents containing either the acronym ADD or the words attention deficit disorder, then narrow the search results only to those documents that also contain the words college students.

Phrase Searching
Pay attention to phrases in search strings.  If you are looking for information on the capital gains tax, you need to enter that part of your search string as a phrase.  Otherwise, you may retrieve irrelevant documents which contain all of the keywords, in any order, anywhere in the document.  Most catalogs, search engines and databases support phrase searches. Internet search engines usually require quotation marks to indicate phrases such as: "capital gains tax", "physician assisted suicide", "human genome project".

Truncation
Another useful search parameter is truncation.  Truncation allows the searcher to insert a truncation symbol, usually an * or ?, as a wildcard at the end or the middle of a word. For example, the search term teen* will locate the terms teen, teens, teenager, teenagers, teenaged, teensy, and teeny. Try not to use truncation on a very short root word as too many words would be retrieved, and the relevance of the search would be affected.  Some search engines automatically truncate your search terms to find plural, -ing, or -ed endings.  Truncation symbols will vary.  Some catalogs databases and search engines do not support truncation. 

Field Searching
Field searching is a technique which allows you to search a particular part of a computer record.  For example, in many search engines and electronic databases, you can specify that a specific word in your search string be found in the title of the document. You may also be able to search for an author's last name, a range of dates, full-text documents, or material in a particular language.  In web search engines, you may be able to search by domain name, URL, or type of file (picture, sound or video).  This search technique works efficiently when you need to narrow your search in a very specific way.

Lesson Topic 4: Assessing Results and Revising Search Strategies

Research is seldom a neat, tidy process. Sometimes your first search attempt will not give you the results you anticipate. You may either find too much information on your topic, not enough information on your topic, or the information you find may not be helpful. In this case, it may be necessary to change or redesign your topic question or statement. One of the most common problems encountered in research is retrieving search results which are too broad or unrelated.  In that case, you will need to rethink your search strategy to limit your search results.

Try the following to narrow and define your search.

  • Use the AND Boolean Operator to add relevant terms to the search.
  • Use the NOT Boolean Operator to eliminate terms from the search.
  • Search for one or more words in the title field as opposed to searching throughout the full-text of a document.
  • Use phrase searching to define your search terms.
  • Use vocabulary that is more specific.
  • Choose a narrower category of a major topic.

When there are too few sources on your topic, try the following to expand or broaden your topic.

  • Combine synonymous terms with the Boolean OR Operator.
  • Think of the topic in broader terms and use a more general vocabulary.
  • Make sure you are using the appropriate vocabulary for the discipline in which your topic falls.
  • Eliminate the least important concept to broaden the search.
  • Try the option available in some search engines and databases that will look for related documents to one or more of your relevant hits.

Material for this lesson was modified from LIS2004 Introduction to Internet Research. This course (LIS 2004) is the intellectual property of the Florida Community Colleges Learning Resources Standing Committee (LRSC), a subcommittee of the Council on Instructional Affairs. You may reuse or modify this work within the rules of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike3.0 unported License. According to this license, if you wish to reuse or modify any of the materials you find in this course, you must attribute ownership of the original work to the LRSC.


Activity

Face-to-Face Classes:

  1. As a group, view “Information Cycle” and review types of information resources.
    Penn State Information Cycle: http://www.libraries.psu.edu/content/dam/psul/up/lls/audiovideo/infocycle_2008.swf
    Enhanced text version: 
    http://media.lib.ecu.edu/reference/howdoi/display.cfm?id=69.0
  2. Instructor promotes discussion about keywords and search strategies with class and facilitates brainstorming for a sample topic.
  3. Divide the class into small groups.  Each group brainstorms keywords or related terms that would be helpful when searching for a sample topic.  Each group records that use these keywords, terms and search strategies and reviews search results.
  4. Class reconvenes to discuss group results and revision strategies for searches that produced too little, too much or irrelevant information.

 

Online Classes:

  1. Ask students to view “Information Cycle” and review written materials for this lesson.
    Penn State Information Cycle: http://www.libraries.psu.edu/content/dam/psul/up/lls/audiovideo/infocycle_2008.swf
    Enhanced text version: 
    http://media.lib.ecu.edu/reference/howdoi/display.cfm?id=69.0
  2. Ask students to post their topic and keywords to a discussion forum and fellow students to respond with additional keyword suggestion and search strategies.
  3. Ask students to review and post a summary of their search results.
  4. Ask student to respond with suggested revision strategies.

Lesson 3

Module 2, Lesson 3

Module 2, Lesson 3

The information literate student accesses needed information effectively and efficiently.
(Standard 2)

  • Extracts, records and manages information and its resources (Performance Indicator 2.3)
    • Manages resources in an organized manner. (FL College Outcome 2.3A)
    • Identifies relevant material to be appropriately quoted. (FL College Outcome 2.3B)
    • Records pertinent citation information and employs appropriate citation styles. (FL College Outcome 2.3C)

Lesson Objectives
On completion of this lesson, students should be able to:

  • Save or email sources for future citation
  • Identify relevant sources to quote
  • Understand the basics of citing sources

Lesson Content

How Do I Save My Sources?

As you collect sources for your research project you will want to save as much information about your sources as possible. This will make it easy to go back and find your sources or to find the citation information you will need for your citations.

There are several ways to save your sources.  Whether using an online library catalog or a library database make sure you use the saving tools provided to you.  Many catalogs and databases have options that allow you to email, print or save the citation information, and in some cases the full text of an article.

Here is an example of how to save the citation information of a book or eBook in a library catalog. In your search results click on the title of the item to find saving options.

 

You can find similar options in databases as well. Here is an example of how to save an article from Academic Search Complete. Once you access the record or full text of an article look for the options to email, print, or save your sources.

 

When visiting a website remember to save the URL or website address. Cut and paste the URL into your email to make it easy to find again. Some online newspapers or magazines will allow you to email articles to yourself.

How Do I Identify Sources to Quote?

  • Identify ideas and statements relevant to your topic from information gathered.
  • Use quotations when you want to:
    • Add the power of the author’s words to support your argument
    • Disagree with the author’s argument
    • Compare and contrast specific points of view
    • Note important research already available about your topic

(From Riedling, Ann Marlow. An Educator’s Guide to Information Literacy: What Every High School Senior Needs to Know. Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2007.)

How Do I Appropriately Cite What I Have Used?

In order to avoid plagiarism, you will need to use citations to give credit to the original source of an idea, quote, or piece of information you use in your research.

Throughout your college experience you will likely use different styles, or ways, of citing your sources. This will depend on the discipline of the course you are taking. Your Composition courses will likely us the MLA (Modern Language Association) style of formatting citations. The sciences and social sciences will often use APA (American Psychological Association) style. There are other styles such as the Chicago Style of formatting used by the humanities.

While all of these styles differ, there some key elements in all of these formats that you will need to record while you collect your sources. Keep in mind that all citation styles are different so you will want to look at the citation guide assigned by your instructor when recording your sources.

  • Author: Many sources will include an author. How authors are cited will vary by style.
  • Titles: Titles for books will usually consist of the title found on the title page. When using a book that is a collection or anthology you will be required to provide the name of the work and the title of the book. For periodicals you will need the name of the article, not the periodical name, for the title.
  • Publication Information: For books the publication information will often include the publisher and where it was published. For periodicals you will need the magazine or journal name and in some cases the volume and issue numbers. For websites look for an organization that created the content.
  • Dates: Most sources will have a date. Try to record all of the date information.
  • Access: You will often say where you accessed a source. Was it from the Web or Print? Is there a URL or Digital Object Identifier (DOI)?

Keep in mind that all citation styles may ask for different pieces of information for your citation. Since these requirements are different you will want to look at the citation guide assigned by your instructor when recording your sources. For this lesson we are going to look at examples of MLA and APA formatted citations for a bibliography. See the external links at the end of this lesson to learn more about in text citations.

Modern Language Association

Citing a Book

If you have a physical book the citation information you need will be found on the title page and the verso, which is found on the backside of a title page. It is common to need the author, title, and publication information.

 

You can also find citation information for books or eBooks from your library’s catalog.

 

Pulling the information from the book or from the library catalog you will be able to create a citation for your book source. Here is an example of the MLA citation of the book found in the catalog.

 

Keep in mind that each citation style will have different requirements. This may affect how you cite such things as multiple authors or books that have an editor.

Citing from a Database

When searching in databases you will see citation information either in the search results or by clicking on the item title or the full text link.

Here is an example of the citation information found in the search results from the database Academic Search Complete.

 

The citation information can also be found in the article’s full record. In most databases you simply click on the title to access the full record.

 

Here is an example of the MLA citation of the scholarly article used in the example. This example came from the Academic Search Complete database.

 

There can be several variations to the citation information given. For example, popular magazines often do not have volume or issue numbers.
Remember to email, save, or print your articles to easily access you sources at a later date.

Citing Websites

Since websites are numerous and come from many different types of sources the information you will find for the citation will vary. Some websites may not have an author listed. Newspaper and magazine articles will often have a date listed while other types of websites will not. It is important to know what information you will need for your citation and to save as much information as possible.

Let’s look at an example of an online newspaper to see the type of information that will be needed.

 

Below is the MLA format citation of the previous article.

 

A URL may not be needed in your citation, but sending it to yourself will make it easier to find again. Also look to see if there is an email option if you are looking at an online article from a newspaper or magazine.

Remember that some citations require that you record the date you accessed a website.

American Psychological Association (APA)

Citing a Book or e-Book

If you have a physical book the citation information you need will be found on the title page and the verso, which is found on the backside of a title page. It is common to need the author, title, and publication information.

 

You can also find citation information for books or eBooks from your library’s catalog.

 

Pulling the information for the book or e-Book from the library catalog you will be able to create a citation. Here is an example of the APA citation of the book and e-Book.

Print Book

 

E-Book

(Keep in mind that each citation style will have different requirements. This may affect how you cite such things as multiple authors or books that have an editor.)

 

Citing from a Database

When searching in databases you will see citation information either in the search results or by clicking on the item title or the full text link.

Here is an example of the citation information found in the search results.

 

The citation information can also be found in the article’s full record.

 

Here is an example of the APA citation of the scholarly article used in the example.

There can be several variations to the citation information given. For example, popular magazines often do not have volume or issue numbers.

Remember to email, save, or print your articles to easily access you sources at a later date.

 
Citing Websites

Since websites are numerous and come from many different types of sources the information you will find for the citation will vary. Some websites may not have an author listed. Newspaper and magazine articles will often have a date listed while other types of websites will not. It is important to know what information you will need for your citation and to save as much information as possible.

Let’s look at an example of an online newspaper to see the type of information that will be needed.

 


Activity

1. Provide a MLA and/or APA citation for the following print book.

 

2. Provide a MLA and/or APA citation for the following article.

 

3. Provide a MLA and/or APA for the following website.

 


External Resources