Skip to main content
Banner Image


Citation Styles

Which style should I use?

Typically, the discipline in which you are working (history, sociology, English, biology, etc.) will determine which citation style to use in your papers. However, when writing a paper for class, make sure to check which style your instructor prefers. The following represent the most frequently used citation styles in the academic world (the accompanying links have been selected for their accuracy and ease of use):

AP For the journalism discipline
Purdue's OWL (Online Writing Lab)

APA For disciplines in the social sciences
Purdue's OWL (Online Writing Lab)

Bluebook For citing legal documents
Introduction to Basic Legal Citation (online ed. 2010) by Peter W. Martin (Cornell Law School)
Boston University's School of Law Bluebook Checklist

Chicago For the history and art history disciplines
The Chicago Manual of Style Online

*Turabian Using Chicago style as its basis, Turabian was designed especially for students.
University of Chicago's Citation Guide
Ohio State's Citation Guide

CSE (Formerly CBE) For disciplines in the sciences

MLA For disciplines in the humanities
Purdue's OWL (Online Writing Lab)


See also Duke University's list of citation styles by academic discipline.


Note: the above content was compiled by The University Center for Writing-based Learning at DePaul University and re-used with their full permission.

Citation Management Tools

Citing Social Media