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Citing EBSCO eBooks

EBSCO eBooks are available in both PDF and EPUB formats. PDF books have page numbers that typically correlate with the print version of the title, and those page numbers may be used for citation purposes. EPUB eBooks are formatted with reflowable text, which means the text resizes to fit the viewing window, and therefore they do not have stable pagination.

Most citation style guides, particularly in the humanities, make allowances for eBooks without stable page numbers. You can use this page for reference if you’re trying to cite an eBook.

MLA Style

Whole Book References in MLA Style

Begin with the publication information as you would cite a comparable print work, and end it with the designation of the file type, such as EPUB file, PDF file, or Nook file. Here is an example:

Hoene, Christin. Music and Identity in Postcolonial British-South Asian Literature. New York: Routledge, 2015. EPUB file.

In-Text Citations in MLA Style

For citing portions within the text, you may use page numbers if the work is a PDF file with fixed pages. If the work does not have fixed page numbers, but is divided into stable numbered sections or chapters, cite the number of the chapter or section. Here is an example using a book without page numbers, but with chapters:

Hoene argues that in Rushdie’s work, rock music is not a colonizing force that separates us from one another, but instead, it has the power to transcend political identities and confront us with our shared humanity (ch. 4).

Note: Oftentimes the page numbers displayed on a digital reader are fluid, and adjust depending on the device and font size. Do not use these page numbers – they will not appear consistently to other users because they are session-specific and meant to signal your place in the work. If there is no stable section numbering, cite the work as a whole by including the author’s name in parenthesis (Hoene).

 

APA Style

Whole Authored Book References

Begin with the publication information as you would cite a comparable print work: author (publication year), and title in italics.

If the book is published in a universal standard, such as EPUB or PDF, end the citation with the source of retrieval, or the database from which the eBook was obtained. In these cases, including all EBSCO eBooks, there is no need to add a file type.

The source can be a URL or DOI (Digital Object Identifier). If the DOI is not available, then use “Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/”. Here is an example for an EBSCO eBook:

Kursn, Robert (2004). Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/

This citation is valid even if you downloaded a PDF or EPUB from EBSCOhost and accessed it on your iPad, Kindle Fire, Galaxy, etc.

Here are the citation templates for whole authored books in EPUB or PDF format:

Author, A. A. (year). Title of e-book. http://dx.doi.org/xxxxx

Author, A. A. (year). Title of e-book. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/

Here are the citation templates for whole edited books in EPUB or PDF format:

Editor, A. A. (Ed.). (year). Title of e-book. http://dx.doi.org/xxxxx

Editor, A. A. (Ed.). (year). Title of e-book. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/

Note: If you’re accessing an eBook that has been published in a specialized or proprietary format, you’ll need to insert a designation of the digital version you used. This would apply to a Kindle eBook from Amazon, a nook book from Barnes & Noble, or an iBook from Apple. It doesn’t matter where you’re reading the Kindle book---on a Kindle, on an iPhone Kindle app, on a Kindle app on your PC, etc.---but rather that the book is published in Kindle format. For those books, insert the version (Kindle book, nook book, iBook version) in square brackets after the title. Here is an example of a reference for a Kindle book.

Kursn, Robert (2004). Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II. [Kindle book]. Retrieved from http://www.amazon.com

Book Chapter References

Begin with the publication information as you would cite a comparable print work: author (publication year), and title in italics. If you’re using a book chapter from a book where each chapter has a different author (these books are generally compiled by an editor), then you’ll want to provide a separate reference entry for each chapter that you use. (For more information on determining whether to use a book reference or a chapter reference, see the APA Blog).

Use the reference guideline for the entire book and insert the editor of the volume after the title of the book and the page numbers of the chapter at the end. If the eBook chapter is an EPUB and does not have page numbers, omit that part of the reference. Here is an example:

Curran, Stuart. (2007). Anna Seward and the Dynamics of Female Friendship. In Pietropoli, Cecilia, and Crisafulli, Lilla Maria (Ed.). Romantic Women Poets: Genre and Gender. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/

Here is the reference in template form:

Author, A. A. (Year). Title of chapter. In B. B. Editor (Ed.), Title of book [E-reader version, if applicable] (pp. xxx–xxx if applicable). Retrieved from http://xxxxx

In-Text Citations in APA Style

For paraphrased material, provide the author and publication date in parenthesis. If you include the author’s name in the text, you do not have to repeat it in the citation. Here are two examples:

  • Curran argues that Anna Seward’s poem “Llangollen Vale” is a thinly veiled tribute to her lover (2007).

  • Anna Seward’s poem “Llangollen Vale” is a thinly veiled tribute to her lover (Curran, 2007).

To cite a direct quotation, also provide page numbers if the eBook has (set) page numbers. If the eBook is in an EPUB and does not have (consistent) page numbers, you can use any of the following:

  • a paragraph number, if provided, preceded by the ¶ symbol or the abbreviation para.; alternatively, you can count paragraphs down from the beginning of the document;

  • an overarching heading plus a paragraph number within that section; or

  • an abbreviated heading (or the first few words of the heading) in quotation marks, in cases in which the heading is too unwieldy to cite in full.

Here are some examples:

  • PDF EBSCO eBook: Curran notes that for Seward, the ruins of the Abbey represent “a beacon not of devotion but of superstition and bigotry” (Curran, 2007, p. 13).

  • EPUB EBSCO eBook: Curran notes that for Seward, the ruins of the Abbey represent “a beacon not of devotion but of superstition and bigotry” (Curran, 2007, ch. 1, para. 4).

The APA Style Blog has a number of other examples of how to incorporate a direct quotation into your text.

Source: APA Style Expert and http://blog.apastyle.org/apastyle/2011/06/how-do-you-cite-an-e-book.html