The Arizona Desert Lamp

I’m feeling lucky

Posted in Culture, Technology by Connor Mendenhall on 14 April 2009

Good news for students who haven’t touched a book since high school: the spanking new seventh edition of the “MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers” simplifies the standard for citing works from the Web. Printed works are no longer considered the default for citations, and best of all, there’s no more need to list annoying, lengthy URLs for online material. From the handbook:

“Inclusion of URLs has proved to have limited value… for they often change, can be specific to a subscriber or a session of use, and can be so long and complex that typing them into a browser is cumbersome and prone to transcription errors. Readers are now more likely to find resources on the Web by searching for titles and authors’ names than by typing URLs.”

That’s right–the new best practice from the most important arbiters of academic standards is “just Google it.” In an age when most students yank the top three Google results and call it “research,” it’s an apt update. Then again, I hear all the cool kids are trying to cite their Twitter feeds.

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2 Responses

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  1. Emily Fritze said, on 16 April 2009 at 10:06 am

    The Appropriations Senator only votes on an item in the case of a tie. The vote was unanimous because the appropriations board voted it to be that way.

  2. […] era of the page-numbered citation is coming to an end. MLA rules no longer assume the primacy of printed text, and as search-based citation standards permeate through academe, new norms will obviate this […]


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