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Writers' Center

Eastern Washington University

Using Sources

Tips for documenting your sources

Citation FAQ

This FAQ answers only a handful of questions for some increasingly common but tricky citations.There are hundreds of different types of sources, so for further examples or more complete explanations see:

--APA, (2010) Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. Washington D.C. American Psychological Association.

--APA Style Guide.

-- Modern Language Association. MLA Handbook for Writes of Research Papers. 7th ed. New York: MLA, 2009. Print.

-- Purdue Owl MLA Guide

Kate L. Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, 8th ed. ( Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 2010).

-- Chicago/Turabian Style Guide

--Purdue Owl Chicago Guide

APA FAQ

Please note: These guidelines follow the 6th edition of APA style and will be updated to 7th edition by summer 2020.

How do I cite a tweet, Facebook, or other social media post?

The APA Manual does not include an official method for citing Tweets, Facebook status updates, or other social media postings. Follow the general APA guidelines and include:

-Author (real last name, initials, or group name) followed by [screen name in brackets].

-Date (Year, month, day, if available, otherwise Year. Use “n.d” if no date is available).

-Title (Use up to the first 40 words of a post as the title. For a post with no text, eg. a photo, include brief description in [square brackets], note form, eg. [Tweet], [Facebook status update] in [square brackets].

-Source (List a retrieval URL for the posting, eg. https://www.facebook.com/EWUWritersCenter.

Example:

Brown, J. [johnbrown] (1856, May 3). Having a great time in #BleedingKansas. [Tweet]. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/johnbrown/status/xxxxxxxxxxx

For in-text citations cite (Author, date).

See also:

APA Style blog

How do I cite a class lecture?

Include the Author (lecturer), Date, Title of lecture (italics). Personal Collection of (the lecturer’s name), school or organization they teach at, city, state. Example:

Brown, J, 1854, Sept. 18, My Plan for Kansas. Personal Collection of John Brown, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington.

For in-text citations cite (Author, date).

How do I cite a YouTube video?

Author, [Screen name in square brackets]. (year, month, day). Title of video (italics)

[Video file]. Retrieved from http://xxxxxxxxx . Example:

Brown, J. [johnbrown]. (1856, May, 5). Kansas in the Spring [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?x=xxxxxxxxxxx

For in-text citations cite (Author/creator, or poster, date).

How do I cite an e-book (Kindle, Kobo, etc.)

For electronic books (ebooks) like Kindle, cite the:

-Author, date, title, form [eg. Kindle, epub, in square brackets] and where the book was downloaded from, eg. Amazon.com, rather than publication data. Example:

Brown, John. (1856). My Life in Kansas. [Kindle]. Retrieved from http://Amazon.com.

For in-text citations cite (Author, date).

What if I can’t find an example for my type of citation?

In most cases every citation should include Author, date of publication, title, and publication information. In text citations are (Author, date). Use the closest example you can find, or combine several so that all the pertinent information is included.

MLA FAQ

How do I cite a tweet, Facebook, or social media post?

Follow the general MLA guidelines and include username, title (complete tweet or Facebook status update), the name of the container in italics (Twitter), date time of posting, and URL. 

Example: @johnbrown. “Having a great time in #BleedingKansas.” Twitter, 3 May 1856, 4:15 p.m., twitter.com/therestoftheURL.

For in-text citations cite (username).

How do I cite a lecture?

For a class lecture include the Author (lecturer), “the lecture’s title in quotes,” followed by the date and location. End with a one word description of type, e.g. Reading, lecture.

Example: Brown, John. “My Plan for Kansas.” 18 Sept. 1854, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington. Lecture.

For in-text citations cite (Author).

How do I cite a YouTube video?

Include Author or editor/creator, “title” (in quotes), YouTube in italics, poster name, post date, URL.

Example: Brown, John. “Kansas in the Spring.” Youtube, uploaded by Purple Trees, 4 August 2016, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxxxxxxxxxx.

For in-text citations cite (Author/creator or poster).

How do I cite an ebook (Kindle, Kobo, etc.)?

In general, ebooks are cited like other publications with Author, Title, edition, Publication info (publisher, date).

Example: Brown, John. My Life in Kansas. Kindle ed., Abolitionist Books, 1856. 

What if I can’t find an example for my type of citation?

In most cases every citation should include Author, title, publication information, date of publication. In text citations are (author page #). Use the closest example you can find or combine several so that all the pertinent information is included.

Chicago/Turabian FAQ

How do I cite a tweet or Facebook post?

Chicago does not have an official format for citing social media posts, so stick to the basic format and include author, a description of the type of post (eg. Tweet, Facebook status update), date, and the URL. Example:

Brown, John. Twitter post. May 5, 1856, 2:45 a.m. http://twitter/johnbrown.

For footnotes or endnotes, Author, source (Twitter post), date, URL.

How do I cite a lecture?

For a lecture list the Author, “lecture title,” (in quotes), sponsor (such as a university or meeting), location, and date. Example:

Brown, John.My Plan for Kansas.” Lecture, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Washington. Sept. 18, 1854.

For footnotes or endnotes, Author, title, publication info, date.

How do I cite a YouTube video?

List the user name of the video poster, then the “video title” in quotes, Youtube, type of material (Online video clip), and the full URL and date you accessed the clip in parentheses. Example:

Brown, John. “Kansas in Spring.” YouTube. Online video clip, http://www.youtube.com/watch?xxxxxxxxxx (accessed May 28, 2014).

For footnotes or endnotes, Author or creator or poster, title, Youtube, type (Online Video clip), URL, date accessed.

How do I cite an e-book (Kindle, Kobo, etc.)?

For an ebook like a Kindle edition the citation is the same as for a print edition, except Kindle edition is added at the end. Example:

Brown, John. My Life in Kansas. Boston: Abolitionist Books, 1856. Kindle edition.

For footnotes or endnotes, Author, title, publication info, date, ebook edition.

What if I can’t find an example for my type of citation?

In most cases every citation should include Author, title, publication information, date of publication. Footnotes/endnotes should include Author, title, publication info, date. Use the closest example you can find, or combine several so that all the pertinent information is included.