Citation Style Guides

Citation is a reference to other sources whereby you tell the readers from where do you get the ideas/words/figures for your paper. Citation is usually found in the form of in-text citation (in the body of your writing) or bibliographies/references (appears at the end of your paper).

The main reasons for citing others’ work include:

  • To show that you’ve done proper research by providing the information of the sources
  • To acknowledge others’ ideas and giving credit for it
  • To avoid plagiarism in your writing
  • To give an opportunity for the readers to track down the sources for the purpose of producing new research

The following styles are accepted by USM. Please refer to your school/program for the preferred style. Please browse the corresponding websites on how to use a particular style. You are required to use the adopted style consistently throughout the thesis.

Link to the Style Guidelines (as advised by IPS USM)




  • MLA Style – Purdue Writing Lab – Purdue University
  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. Joseph Gibaldi. 5th ed. New York: Modern Language Association of America, 1999.
  • A Guide for Writing Research Papers Based on Modem Language Association (MLA)
  • MLA Style – Guidelines for citing the World Wide Web resources authorized by the MLA

All citation styles basically ask you to provide general information about the citing works such as author name, title, publication year, place of publication & publisher’s name (for a book), and journal name, volume and issue number (for a journal).

 Bibliographic Management Software: Mendeley 


We strongly suggest you use any bibliographic management software like Mendeley (click here to download Mendeley software for free) so that you do not necessarily need to remember the sequence of the citation information because it will be done by the software automatically.

# If you are interested to join our Mendeley training, please refer to our monthly workshop schedule (face to face learning) or you may learn online (self-learning) here.