The Best Style Guide Resources for MLA, APA, Chicago, and CSE

mla style guideWriting to a certain style guideline, or standardized format, is required by many professional and academic entities today. Generally, you begin to learn these styles in high school by writing papers that follow certain formats under one of the main style guides. The most widely accepted and used guides are MLA, APA, Chicago/Turabian, and CSE. Proper citation is especially important to avoid plagiarism.

Fortunately, there are many online resources guides to check your writing against. has compiled a plethora of online resources for double checking the format and content of your writing, as well as creating a bibliography or works cited page.


APA or American Psychological Association  Style

APA style is mainly used in the study of psychology. The official site for APA has free tutorials, links to the books, style guides, instructional aids, and online courses. The site also has a large section on the latest psychology news and events.

MLA or Modern Language Association Style

MLA is used mainly in the study of humanities, such as English, literature, art, music, philosophy, foreign languages, religion, and architecture. The official site of the MLA, or Modern Language Association, promotes their most recent publications, gives a short overview of MLA style, and discusses MLA membership qualifications, events and conventions.

CSE or Council of Scientific Editors Style

CSE style was produced to provide the scientific writing community with more specific writing standards in relation to the subjects and topics discussed in the scientific realm.

Chicago Style

A set of style rules developed by the University of Chicago Press beginning over a hundred years ago to aid printing technicians and continuing today to provide a writing and formatting standard through The Chicago Manual of Style.

Turabian Style

Turabian style is a slight variation on Chicago style specifically designed for student writers and their scholastic writing needs.

AAA or American Anthropological Association Style

AAA style offers a style guide based on the combination of The Chicago Manual of Style and Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary and provides lots of information and examples.

Free Bibliography Generators

EasyBib lets you generate a free MLA style bibliography or works cited page. Just enter your sources into the field and get your free works cited page.

Noodle Tools is the one of the original works cited generators. NoodleBib Express allows you to create a free MLA, APA, or Chicago style works cited page. They have other software that costs money, so be careful.

Son of Citation Machine lets you select which style you want to use and pick which kind of source, then fill in the blanks and, in a few seconds, Son of Citation Machine will create a correctly formatted bibliography or works cited page for you.

WorksCited4U allows you to choose the style you wish to use and then gives you instructions on how to successfully write and cite according to the style of your choice.

General Resources

APA Lite for College Papers gives an overview of APA style and includes topics such as editing, page formatting, documenting research, and provides examples of reference or works cited styles.

APA Style Essentials has examples of APA style documents, and information on general guidelines, title pages, citations, quotes, references, footnotes, and tables and links to websites where you can purchase the APA style book.

Bedford / St. Martin’s MLA Updates allows you to view portions of the MLA handbook for free by downloading their PDFs.

Chicago Citation Style is a two page downloadable Chicago style guide that covers the basics of citation, including footnotes and endnotes.

Chicago Style Crib Sheet offers a quick overview of Chicago and Turabian style, including how to use style, page formatting, and using footnotes and endnotes.

The Chicago Manual of Style Online goes over things like, how to format tables, quotations, how to write numbers and deal with unusual word usage.

Council of Science Editors is the official site and the best resource for understanding what CSE, or Council of Science Editors, style is and how to properly use it.

The Online Writing Center (OWL) at Purdue has great information to use, such as example papers, work cited, and bibliographies. There is also information on where to purchase Chicago style guides.

Online Citation Guide gives us a short introduction and examples on how to properly cite sources, including using abbreviations parenthetical in-text citations, and different types of paper formats.

Research and Documentation Online discusses how to find sources for your work, and then document them in your work. The site will take you to examples and descriptions, according to your choice of several different disciplines.

Writing at CSU’s “Writing Guide” is Colorado State University’s writing style guide and has more information on CSE style guidelines and how to use proper citations at the conclusion of your paper.

Library Quick Guide: Citing Electronic Resources with MLA has some great links to style resources and offers a useful list of examples for electronic source citations.

MLA Style Lite offers guides for page and document formatting, writing mechanics, citing references and text and block quotations.

Psychology with Style: A Hypertext Writing Guide offers a variety of example APA style research papers so you can go over such topics as the use of quotations, abbreviations, and usage details.

Research and Documentation Online allows you to choose from a variety of disciplines and then select what type or area of your project you need to style or format. It then generates a nicely formatted page designed to give you examples for all of your writing needs.

University Resources

American Academy of Art offers tutorials, videos, websites, books, PDFs, examples and other resources for writing and citing according to MLA style.

Anne Arundel Community College has guides and links to resources, as well as examples for every style you may need to write a bibliography.

Long Island University Post’s APA Citation Style Guide offers clear, easy-to-follow examples for a variety of APA source citations.

Camosun College gives detailed examples of electronic sources, print sources and other links.

Capital Community College focuses on MLA and APA style and has examples of tables and figures, a FAQ, quotation tutorials, how to perform last minute corrections, and how to write a works cited.

Capital Community College provides examples of works cited, grammar, writing tips, paper formats, writing lessons, and plagiarism rules for MLA style.

Concordia University Libraries includes a section on parenthetical references and then an extensive list of examples of work citations.

Cornell University Library has fantastic examples and descriptions of how to write a proper works cited page in APA, MLA, and Chicago style.

Dakota State University discusses end references and in-text citation and shows examples for both.

DukeUniversityLibraries has a page with links to style guidelines for a wide variety of formats, including APA, MLA, Chicago, Turabian, CSE, and other styles for specific types of writings.

Georgia Southern University is an excellent PDF with examples of APA style standards for referencing articles, books, and electronic media.

North Seattle Community College offers examples, and links to games and other resources for learning how to write to APA style.

The Ohio State University has articles, books and electronic resources available for most of the standard styles, including MLA, APA, CSE, CBE, Chicago, and Turabian.

Southwestern College Library gives writers links to excellent citation sources and style guides for MLA and APA style.

The Ohio State University offers articles books and other resources for citing according to scientific style and format, as well as MLA and APA.

UNC University Libraries discusses how to cite your sources, including print sources and online sources, and includes examples of bibliographies. Also offers information about why we use citation.

The University of Illinoisat Urbana-Champaign has a Center for Writing Studies online. This easy to navigate site offers APA tutorials that breaks down how to cite sources. Also included are a grammar handbook, writing tips, and ESL resources.

University of Maryland University College has examples for how to include authors, dates and titles in citations.

The University of Southern Mississippi Libraries has a huge list of examples for citing all kinds of sources in Turabian style.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison has fantastic resources for writing according APA style, including parenthetical citations, references, and a writer’s handbook.

Washington State University provides great download-and-printable MLA style guide resources and has links to other great resources.

Westmont College has a psychology section that offers easy-to-understand examples of APA style guidelines and how to successfully achieve these results in Microsoft Word.

William Paterson University of New Jersey is a site that has great examples of correctly written APA citations.