How to Cite an Essay to Get an A?

When you wrote an essay, you need to make references to the sources you used in the text, like books or other literary information. In the article, you will find tips on how to cite an essay properly using such citation styles as American Philological Association (APA), Association of Modern Languages (MLA), and Chicago style.

Citing an Essay in APA

First, you need to indicate the author or authors of an essay. Write your full name. If there are several names use just initials. In this case put commas between the names. Before the last name the commas are omitted and are replaced by an ampersand (&). For example:

  • Dow, J.
  • Dow, J. & Johnson, S. K.
  • Orion, D., Smith, R. & Johnson, S. K.

Specify the publication date of the source. It can be only a year of publication but if you know the exact date of publication, then the year-month-day format will be the best. Do not forget to use the dots. For example:

  • Dow, J. (2001).
  • Orion, D., Smith, R. & Johnson, S.K. (July 15, 2011).

Specify the title of the essay. Do not write it in italics, do not underline it, and do not put it in quotes. Use the capital letter only for the first word in the sentence, as well as for the names. If the title contains a title, it should also begin with a capital letter immediately after the colon. At the end of the sentence, put a period.

  • Dow, J. (2001). Recent achievements in the diagnosis of mental illnesses.
  • Orion, D., Smith, R., & Johnson, S.K. (July 15, 2011). Cold Bones: A History of Literary Horror.

Specify the editors of the articles you used when writing your essay. Write their last names in full and use initials for their names. If there are two authors, an ampersand (&) is placed between them, if there are three or more, separate them with commas. If there is only one editor, then after their surname you need to write the abbreviation “ed.” in parentheses. If there are several editors, write “under the editorship.” Commas are placed between them.

  • Dow, J. (2001). Recent achievements in the diagnosis of mental illnesses. J. Rowell (ed.).
  • Orion, D., Smith, R. & Johnson, S.K. (July 15, 2011). Cold Bones: A History of Literary Horror. Under the editorship A. Hoffman & C. G. Brook.

Specify the name of the source. Write only the first word from the capital letter as well as names. Write them in italics.

In the parentheses, indicate the page numbers of the essay with the abbreviation “p.” After the parentheses, put a period.

Indicate the name of the publisher and the place of publication. Write the name of the organization and the city where the publishing house is located. Separate this information with colons, and in the end, put a period.

How to Cite an Essay Using MLA

Indicate the name of the author or authors. Surnames and names should be written in full, if it is possible. Additional authors should also be indicated. If there are more than three, then put commas between the names, and between the last two – “and.” Do not forget about the periods. For example:

  • Dow, John.
  • Dow, John and Samuel Quentin Johnson.
  • Robert, Smith, Daniel Orion and Samuel Quentin Johnson.

Specify the title of the work. The first word is written with a capital letter, and the entire title should be quoted. In the end, put a period.

Specify the name of the source. Write only the first word from the capital letter, and also the names. Format it in italics. Do not forget about the period.

Specify the names of the editors. This must be done in the format name – surname. If there is one editor, then it should be designated by its abbreviation “ed.” If there are several editors, write “under the ed.” before the name. In the end, put a period.

You should also specify the publisher. Write the name of the organization, the city where the publishing house is located, and the year of publication. Between the city and the publishing house put a colon, and between the publisher and the year put a comma. In the end, put a period.

Indicate the pages. The first and last pages of the text should be clarified. Page numbers are written through a hyphen, and at the end you need to put a period.

Specify the publication method. For printed publications “Print.”, for electronic publications “Electron.” If the electronic edition is available online, then write “Web.” In the end, do not forget to put the period.

How to Cite an Essay Using Chicago Style

Indicate the author or authors of the essay. In footnotes and notes, the name of the author is written in the format name – surname. In the list of used literature, first indicate the surname and then the name of the author. In footnotes, this is done through a comma, in the list of used literature, you need to put periods.

  • Robert Smith, Daniel Orion and Samuel Quentin Johnson,
  • Smith, Robert, Daniel Orion and Samuel Quentin Johnson.

Specify the title of the essay. It is written in quotes with a capital letter. At the end of footnotes or notes, a comma is placed. In the list of references you need to put a period.

Specify the names of the articles used in the work. For connection, use the word “in.” The title should be in italics and the first word in the sentence is written with a capital letter. In the footnotes and in the lists of literature, place a comma at the end.

You should also specify the names of the editor or editors. In footnotes, the abbreviation “ed.” is used, and in the lists of literature – “under the editorship.” In the footnotes, only the name of the first editor is indicated, and the rest of the editors are indicated with the words “and others.” In the list of literature you should list all the editors.

Page numbers should be indicated only in the lists of literature.

Specify information about the publication. The city of publication and the name of the publishing house are written through a colon. After the publishing house, put a comma, and indicate the year of publication. If there is a reference, then take the sentence in parenthesis, and use a period in the lists of the literature.

If you used quotations, you should specify page numbers. This applies only to footnotes and notes. Specify the number of the page where you found a quote, phrase, or other information. In the end, put a period.

How to Start an Essay?

First of all, carefully read the assignment. As a rule, a student receives detailed information before writing the essay. At first glance, the task may seem very complicated and confusing, especially if it involves a lot of information. However, in fact it is help in writing a great essay.

Try to understand the task completely. If you understand what your teacher expects from you, you will be able to write a good essay. Once you have received the task, do not hesitate to read what is expected of you.

Learn from the teacher what criteria they are going to use to grade your work. Ask the teacher to explain to you what he or she will take into account when evaluating your work. Thanks to this you will be able to devote more time to the thigs that are really important.

Think about at least two directions of your essay. If you can write an essay on a free subject, you need to come up with a few ideas, and then choose the one that in your opinion is the most interesting. This should not be the first idea that came to your mind.

Drafting Your Essay

Decide on the purpose of your essay. Do you want to convince the reader of something? Do you want to share valuable experience? Do you need analyze the text? Having decided on the purpose, you can pick up the best idea for your essay.

Make a draft of your ideas. Before you start your essay, think through ideas that can be used as its foundation. You can make your plan of ideas in such a way that it would be easier for you to use this information for your essay.

Think about who is going to be the reader of your essay. If this is an essay on a historical topic, think about what information you need to include to help the reader understand what you are talking about in your paper. If your essay is a narrative, think about the best ways to present the information so that the reader can understand what kind of experience you have experienced.

Write a plan. A well-written plan will help you write a great essay.

  • Begin each point of the plan with the main idea.
  • In each main point of your plan, there should be two sub-paragraphs. Each subparagraph must be written with a capital letter.
  • Write at least two details in each subparagraph.

Each subsequent paragraph describing the details should be written to the right of the paragraph written above.

Read your plan. Make sure that each item is in its place. In addition, check whether or not each point contains enough details. If necessary, add more information.
Once your essay plan is ready you can start writing the essay itself, which should no longer be difficult for you because now you know how to cite an essay properly in order not to be blamed in plagiarism.