MLA, APA, Chicago Manual/Turabin Style
An education in liberal arts is a necessary component of any college education that dates back from the earliest colleges and institutions. Back then, liberal arts was all a university was composed of before the advent of specialized and specific education geared toward the necessities of a specific job skill. Now, it seems, the requirements are still in place based on tradition, among a few other reasons. However, for most liberal arts classes a student will be required to read articles and essays and books and write papers based on the information, point made, and/or their understanding of the material. In a effort to avoid plagiarism (a form of theft), ways of documenting sources, information, and ideas borrowed were created. MLA (Modern Language Association), APA (American Psychological Association), and the Chicago Style of writing were all created to help students avoid plagiarism—now considered a serious and punishable offense with very heavy consequences. Whenever a paper is written based on the work of other writers the writer faces three tasks: “(1) supporting a thesis, (2) avoiding plagiarism, (3) integrating quotations and other source material” (Hacker, 113). According to Diana Hacker, author of A Pocket Style Manual, “Three different acts are considered plagiarism: (1) failing to cite quotations and borrowed ideas, (2) failing to enclose borrowed language in quotation marks, and (3) failing to put summaries and paraphrases in your own words” (Hacker, 113). The Modern Language Association style of writing (MLA) is the most commonly used for “English and other humanities classes” based “on some extent of reading” (Hacker, 113). The MLA style of writing is a collection of rules that all writers, writing from specific sources, must use to properly cite such sources thereby giving credit where credit is due. These rules help writers avoid plagiarism and establish a...
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