The mechanics of citing sources will vary from style to style, but there are
two primary methods of giving citations: parenthetical (in-text)
references and notes. Although most documentation styles
provide guidelines for both in-text references and notes, each is
generally identified with one or the other.
Systems of parenthetical reference have become popular in the past
twenty years or so. Their greatest strength from the standpoint
of the reader is that they don't obligate the reader to search for
citations at the bottom of the page or at the end of the document;
all necessary information is located in the text, immediately following
the quotation or reference. From the standpoint of the writer, parenthetical
reference styles are much easier than notes to format and keep track
of (although most word processors will handle this automatically).
Parenthetical references work in conjunction with the list
of sources that appears at the end of your document. That is,
the information that appears in parentheses after a quotation or
reference allows the reader to turn to the list of sources and identify
which one is being cited. Thus, if a particular author has more
than one entry in the list of sources, your parenthetical reference
must give enough information to allow the reader to identify which
work is being cited. This may involve including the year of publication,
or a shortened version of the title, or both.
The information provided in the parenthetical reference varies
from style to style. Because the chronology of previous research
is important in evaluating its usefulness, the APA
style requires the date to be included with the author's name.
Other styles, such as the MLA style, require only the page number
for quotations (as long as there will be no confusion as to which
work is being cited).