Back to: Academic and Professional Writing Unit 3
What is the difference between APA from MLA format of Citation Referencing Style. Give 2 examples each.
APA and MLA format refers to the two main citation styles used in papers, reports, and academic essays. MLA stands for Modern Language Association and is currently in its 9th edition, which has been published in 2021. The MLA format was designed by the Modern Language Association in the MLA Handbook to create a standard for formatting research papers. This was done with an aim to keep the papers uniform and professional regardless of the subject. Its rules encompass everything within a paper ranging from citing your sources to when words should be italicised to spacing of headers and margins.
APA style is the formal style of formatting developed by the American Psychological Association in 1929, setting up rules for journal articles publications and books.
Rules of MLA Format:
1. One-inch margins. All four sides of the document must have an inch of space from the paper’s edge.
2. Indented paragraphs: Every paragraph must be intended with a half-inch wide space, which is the default indent from the Tab key.
3. Double space lines: All lines should be double-spaced to make the paper easy to read.
4. Page numbers: The page numbering must be in the upper-right, after the writer’s last name.
5. Comprehensible font: The two most used and preferred fonts for research papers are Arial and Times New Roman.
Difference between APA and MLA format
1. The APA reference list is titled “References,” while MLA’s version is called “Works Cited.
2. MLA uses the author’s last name and the page number as reference whereas APA uses the author’s last name and the year of publication.
3. When referencing a direct quote, APA includes author’s name, year, and page number whereas MLA includes only the author’s name and the page number.
4. MLA is a formatting style introduced by the Modern Language Association which is mostly followed in the fields like humanities and liberal arts whereas APA refers to a formatting style recommended in the manual of the American Psychological Association mostly used in the fields of behavioural and social sciences.
5. In MLA, the source pages are referred to as Works Cited whereas in APA, the source pages are referred to as References.
● MLA in-text citations include only the author name and page number (John 33) whereas APA in-text citations include the author name, date, and page number (John, 2019, p. 33).
● MLA: Statement (author’s last name page number)
● APA: Statement (author’s last name, year, p. page number)
The choice of the format depends upon the kind of research paper one is working on.