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MEC Database Overview: Writing and Citing


Ask a librarian if you need help finding a citation, or if you are unsure of when to cite.

Go to the writing center or ask your professor for help formatting citations properly.

Reference Books

APA Style

Using APA Style

Graduate courses will require the use of APA style to different degrees, depending on the type of assignments and professor preferences.  This Library page provides an overview of common resources used in learning APA style. 

The official publication of this style is the most current edition offered by the American Psychological Association.  It is available in hardcopy on-line and in the Bookstore as well as on reserve in the College Library.  The manual may also be purchased in tablet versions (e.g., Kindle).


Self-paced Tutorials for Graduate Students

The American Psychological Association offers tutorials on APA Style.

The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University offers several graduate workshops on APA style from organizing a paper to writing literature reviews:

Memorial University offers a set of short videos on specific APA Style topics such as formatting, citing, and referencing.


Finding Help with APA Style

Be careful of “Googling” questions about APA Style because there is a lot of dated and inaccurate information the Internet.  Use an authoritative source.  For example:

Ask a librarian or course professor if you need help finding a citation, or if you are unsure of when to cite.

Search on-line resources from authoritative sources:

Author: Elmhurst College

The Online Writing Lab (OWL) from Purdue University


Avoid Bias in Language Use

  • Acknowledge participation
    • Write about participants in your work and others work to honor their participation
    • e.g., the students completed the interest inventory (appropriate); the survey was administered to the students (not appropriate)
  • Describe at the appropriate level of specificity
    • Don’t specify unless necessary
    • e.g., don’t use gender, marital status, sexual orientation, racial or ethnic identity, and disability, unless needed


  • Be specific
    • e.g., “between 15 and 21 observations” (specific); “more than 14 observations” (not specific)


  • Use ‘people-first’ language and use labels appropriately
    • Know how a group refers to be referenced
    • Use the label to define the disability not the person (e.g., the autistic students (labeled); the students with autism (not labeled)

Avoid Plagiarism

  • Keep careful research notes and keep track of citations and the original sources of information.
  • Copy and paste judiciously.  Never copy and paste anything except a direct quote into your writing.  Quotes should be minimal and used as evidence for claims.
  • Your writing projects should be original and not be copied from other work that you have submitted (i.e., self-plagiarism).
  • If you paraphrase an idea or quote someone, you need to cite.  Other people's ideas need to be credited as well as their quoted words whether they are found on-line or in published resources, copyrighted or not.