Using Noodletools to make a Works Cited entry
Noodletools is an online tool to help you write bibliographic pages for your research papers. They would like you to pay them money, but if you follow these instructions, you can use the service free.
- Go to www.noodletools.com.
- Scroll to the bottom of the page and select Free Tools.
- Select Noodletools Express.
- Click the box that says MLA .
- Figure out what kind of resource you are citing (book, internet site, etc.) and click the drop-down menu that says Cite a:.
- Choose the kind of resource that best matches what you are working on and click the blue Create Citation box.
- The program will walk you through all the choices to make a good Works Cited Page entry. Please note:
- Items with a red asterisk * are required. The program will complain if you try to make a citation without them.
- You probably will not have an entry for every blank. If you don't have one, don't invent something. In particular, if your source does not have an author specified, don't invent something like "NA" or "Author unknown." Just leave it blank and Noodletools will take care of things for you.
- Both the MLA Works Cited page and the APA References page are very particular about capitalization, and Noodletools will help you in that department. Follow their advice. If you foul something up, the program will suggest correct capitalization with a yellow Suggestions call-out box.
- After you have filled in all the blanks that apply to your source, click the blue Save button.
- Highlight, copy, and paste the Works Cited entry onto your Works Cited page, but DON'T CLOSE THE NOODLETOOLS PAGE YET!
- An ordinary "Paste" command will give you an ugly page because it brings in the Courier typeface from Noodletools. To fix this, use "Paste Special Text" or "Paste and Match Formatting" for your word processor (an Internet search will show you how). You will also have to put the italics back in. Noodletools faked the hanging indent of a Works Cited page by putting in a lot of extra spaces, so you will have to delete those too.
- Now find the text which says, "Need help writing a parenthetical (in-text) reference for this entry?" and click the blue link. This will show you what to put in the body text of your paper where you quoted or referred to this resource. (There is more good advice below the sample citation. Read it!)
The procedure for making entries for an APA References page is exactly the same. Two warnings:
- Capitalization and italics for APA entries work very differently from MLA. Just follow the advice from Noodletools.
- Both MLA and APA papers must be "pure." If you can't find a way to do something in APA, don't just throw in an MLA citation. APA doesn't have a way to cite personal letters, emails, theatrical performances and the like. Don't just throw in an MLA citation if you have those things. Do an in-text narrative and let it go at that.
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