Different Citation Styles in Academic Writing

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In academic writing, the citation is important to add, and without this part, your paper would remain incomplete. Citations show how many articles you have studied for your paper. There are different schools of thought which recommend specific styles of citation depending upon the discipline. If you are writing a psychology paper then you would most probably follow the format of the American Psychological Association or APA.

There are several citation styles which you can follow while writing an academic paper. Most of the time your professor would recommend one depending upon the topic and subject. A citation can be in the form of in-text citations, bibliography, or footnotes; both have a different format to follow. One thing is important to note that your essay is not complete until you enter all the references at the end which an essay writer used to complete your essay.

Types of Sources

Before you cite a proper source it should be in your knowledge how many types it has. There are three types of sources, primary, secondary, and peer-reviewed. Primary sources include texts (letters, diaries, newspaper articles, and government reports), artifacts (clothing, sculptures, and buildings), and audiovisual (including photos, films, and interviews).

Types of citation

APA or American Psychological Association

As the name indicates that it was created by this association for social sciences and psychology subjects. Other academic disciplines also follow this style. The citation for books, journals, and news articles varies slightly from each other. It uses a system of a parenthetical citation with author name and published date. In the in-text citation, it only includes the writer's name while the rest of the details appear on the reference page

Chicago Manual of Style

It was first followed by Chicago Manual of Style with two variations Chicago A and Chicago B. The First uses endnote or footnote at the end of each page while the second uses parenthetical author date-citation in the text.


This style is also inspired by the Chicago Manual; it also has two citation options. It is usually used in subjects of arts, history, humanities, and literature.

Modern Language Association

It is used in literary studies with parenthetical citations containing page numbers and the author's name.


It is used in the field of economics without any official guide. This citation has few variations though there are two main style guides for this style. First British Standards Institutions, second Australian Government Published Service. It is also based on the author-date system like APA style.

Vancouver Style

It was developed by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors only for medical students. It is unique as it works on a numeric system. An in-text citation only references appear while the rest of the details appear on the reference page; like Chicago Manual, it does not have endnotes.

AMA or American Medical Association

Just like the Vancouver style, it is also used in medical sciences with a numeric system. Primarily, it does not have any major difference from the Vancouver style.

OSCOLA (Oxford University Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities)

It is mainly used in law schools for legal academic writing. In this citation, you would include all details of the source in the footnote.

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers)

As its name indicates that it is used in technical studies for example information technology. Its domain may differ for specific sources because you can use Chicago style reference as well.

There are several other citations too like ACS, NLM, AAA, and APSA. It shows that dealing with all these citations is an uphill task. Trust me you do not have to worry about all of these. One good option is to hire ‘write my essay’ services. It is because of an academic professional essay writing service that would help you out with your citations.

So if all of these different citation styles, with all their different formatting rules, are confusing you, it’s a good way out in getting your paper done.

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