CITE IT RIGHT: Citing Software or Software Manuals, Databases and Legal References

This is the tenth in a series of blog posts about AMA style, which is designed to impart the basic rules for AMA citation style for different types of sources. This week our focus is the different AMA styles for citing software or software manuals, databases and legal references. To learn more about AMA style and this blog series, please see the first post.

Citing Software (Online) or Software Manuals (Print)

For software online:

Format:

Name of Computer Program [computer program]. Version if available. Location of publisher (City, State or City, Country): Publisher Name; date (year).

Example:

Java for Bioinformatics and Biomedical Applications [computer program]. New York, NY: Springer; 2007.

See AMA Manual of Style 3.15.6 for more information and examples.

For print software manuals cite as for books in print:

Format:

Author(s) (Last name, first and middle initials). Title. Location of publisher (City, State or City, Country): Publisher Name; date (year).

Example:

Peters, P.J. Biostatistical Programs in BASIC Language for Time-Shared Computers.  Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press; 1971.

See AMA Manual of Style 3.15.7 for more information and examples.

Citing Online Databases

Format:

Author(s) (Last name, first and middle initials). Title of database. Location of publisher (City, State or City, Country): Publisher Name; date (year of publication). URL.  (Updated date if available). Accessed date.

Example:

Sloan, A. P. and Kettering, C.F. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Database. New York, NY: Sloan-Kettering Institute; 2011. http://www.mskcc.org/mskcc/html/457.cfmAccessed October 20, 2011.

See AMA Manual of Style 3.15.8 for more information and examples.

Citing Legal References Online and in Print

Legal citation formats are very complex so please refer to the AMA Manual of Style 3.16 for specific rules for different sources such as court cases, law journals and other legislative materials as well a link The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation for complete details including citation styles in different jurisdictions.

Use the same format for both print and online with the addition of the URL and accessed date for the online format.

Check this blog post next week for the correct AMA citation style for email or List-serve messages and personal communications.

<submitted by Catherine Madsen>

 

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