The following discusses general aspects of a reference list including formatting.
Title of Reference List Page: Center the words Works Cited at the top of your reference list page. Do not italicize or put Works Cited in quotation marks.
Order: Citations are listed alphabetically by author's last name. Sources without authors are inserted alphabetically by title within the list. When citing more than one work by an author order the entries by author then alphabetically by title in the Works Cited list.
Capitalization: When citing a title, capitalize each word in the titles of articles, books etc. but Do NOT capitalize articles (a, an, the) prepositions or conjunctions unless one if the first word of the title or subtitle.
Punctuation: All entries in the Works Cited List end with a period. All elements of the citations are separated by a comma except between the author and title of source. The author is followed by a period.
Italics: Italics is used for the title of the source. If the source is part of the a larger entity [e.g. article in a journal] then the source is encased by quotation marks and the title of the container [e.g. journal name etc.] is in italics.
Indention: First line of each citation is flush with the left margin. Indent the second and subsequent lines of citations .5 inches to create a hanging indent.
Abbreviations: common terms such as editor, edited by, translated by are spelled out but not capitalized.
Authors: when a source has 3 or more authors only the first author is listed in reverse order followed by et al. A source with 2 authors lists the first author in reverse name order separated by a comma and the word and, the second author is listed in normal name order. When an organization is both the author and the publisher the publisher author is only listed as the publisher and the entry follows the no author format listing the title first.
Publication Information: place of publication is not listed; publisher name is spelled out except words like company are dropped and for academic presses University of X is listed as U of X.
Issue Numbers for Journals: volume and issue numbers are identified with vol. x, no. 1
URLs: the url is listed for an online or web source, however, http://www if no longer used
DOI: the digital object identifier is encouraged since it is the stable link to the source
Database Location: When citing an article or publication found in an online database the name of the database should be typed in italics followed by the stable URL of the article.
Date: books need the year, journal articles may have a month and year or a season [fall] and year. Magazine articles and online works such as blogs and web pages list the date as day, month, year. If an online source with no date of publication or update, omit that information.
Pagination: page numbers are preceded by p. or pp.
Quotation Marks: Enclose the title of articles, book chapters, presentations etc.in quotation marks and end with a period inside the closing quotation mark.