Unfortunately, there is no universally accepted form of documentation. Different fields of study, different institutions, and even different instructors have their own preferences. The form presented here is that of the Modern Language Association (MLA).

It's widely used in universities and professional publications throughout the United States and Canada, and most professors will accept it readily. If you're uncertain, simply ask your instructor if MLA format is acceptable. MLA encourages parenthetical documentation. This method is much more convenient than the old systems of footnoting or end noting. The new system does require you to make a bibliography (MLA calls it a Works Cited), but that can be done quickly.

Another frequently used documentation style is that of the American Psychological Association (APA). An excellent source of information on both APA and MLA formats, as well as documentation of electronic sources is the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL).