This guide will help you identify elements to distinguish one kind of citation from another (a book from a journal article, for example). The citations below are in the APA style, but the elements you should look out for (authors, editors, publication information...) will be present in some form in most common citation styles.
The animation above shows an article cited in the APA format (view non-animated version).
To distinguish an article from other kinds of sources, look for:
Citations for articles accessed online often list the article's stable URL at the end of the citation:
The animation above shows a book cited in the APA format (view non-animated version).
To distinguish a book from other kinds of sources, look for:
The animation above shows a single chapter from a book cited in the APA format (view non-animated version).
To distinguish a book chapter from other kinds of sources, look for:
Schultz, S. (2005, December 28). Calls made to strengthen state energy policies. The Country Today, pp. 1A, 2A.
National Institute of Mental Health. (1990). Clinical training in serious mental illness (DHHS Publication No. ADM 90-1679). Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.
Engelshcall, R. S. (1997). Module mod_rewrite: URL Rewriting Engine. In Apache HTTP Server version 1.3 documentation (Apache modules). Retrieved from http://httpd.apache.org/docs/1.3/mod/mod_rewrite.html
Example citations for the sources in this box are taken from the Purdue OWL guide.