Ask-a-Librarian Phone Service Limited

Empire State College is installing a new phone system through all of the Saratoga Springs offices. This is going to happen on the morning of Friday, June 16.

Due to this installation process, the library’s Ask-a-Librarian phone services may be limited.  Phones and voicemail may not be fully accessible to the librarians during this transition.  We recommend that if you need immediate assistance from a librarian that you email us at or talk to us on chat.  You can also fill out the form at

We apologize for any inconvenience and we hope to have things smoothed out by Monday, June 19.

How to Cite Your Sources using the OWL Style Guides

If you have been working on papers, discussions or other assignments, you have likely been asked to cite your sources. Depending on the subject area that you are working in and your instructor’s preference, there are a few citation styles that you could be asked to use for this. Luckily, the Empire State College Library is here to help.

Once you know what style your instructor requires for your assignment, you should visit the library homepage at On the library homepage, you will see the link for “Cite Your Sources.” Click on that. Choose the tab for your citation style from APA, MLA, CSE or Chicago/Turabian.

Under your citation style tab, you will see a citation style guide listed as OWL. This is a very helpful source that will help get you through citing your sources.

If you have any questions, you can always contact the library. We are here to help. We can’t check your work but we can help you figure out how to format your citation for a particular source or help you find the citation information if you forgot to write it all down when you first found your resource.

Since APA and MLA are the more commonly used styles, I am going to review the features of the OWL guide below. If you aren’t sure which citation style to use, ask your instructor.


The OWL‘s APA citation style guide also has a menu on the left side of the screen. Their menu is much more detailed. The menu includes general format information which has a sample title page. It also includes In-Text citation information. Below that, you will see a link for Footnotes and Endnotes. Then there are 7 links to help you with your Reference List. They start with Basic Rules and then are broken down by resource type. If you are using items from the online library, you probably want to start with Reference List: Electronic Sources. If you would like to see a sample paper, scroll down a bit on the menu until you see Sample APA Paper. That link will show you a sample paper.





The OWL‘s MLA citation style guide has general information on how to format your paper on the first page. Next on the menu which is on the left side of the page, you will see MLA In-Text Citations: The Basics. This will help you with how to format your in-text citations. After that, the menu includes how to format quotations as well as endnotes and footnotes. For your works cited page, you will see 5 different items listed in the menu based on the type of resource you are using. If you are using an item from the online library, you most likely want to start with MLA Words Cited: Electronic Resources. If you would like to view a sample paper or works cited page, scroll down until you see MLA Sample Paper or MLA Sample Works Cited on the menu.

We have many other resources to help you with your citations on our Cite Your Sources page which you can find here:

Library Summer Hours: May 30-Sept 1

As of today, May 30, 2017, the Ask a Librarian service is on Summer Hours.  Summer Hours run until Labor Day when we switch back to normal business hours.

The Ask a Librarian service consists of phone calls, emails, online form questions, and live chat with an Empire State College librarian.  During the hours we are not available, librarians from other institutions are on our Ask Us 24/7 chat service and they can help answer your library questions.

Ask a Librarian Summer Hours
– Sun: 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
– Mon-Thu: 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
– Fri: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

2017 Memorial Day Weekend Library Hours

In honor of the Memorial Day holiday, the Ask a Librarian service will be closed at 5pm on Friday, May 26, 2017 until we re-open for our summer hours on Tuesday, May 30 at 9am.

While we are unavailable, the librarians at other institutions will be here to answer your chat questions in the Ask Us 24/7 chat.  If you leave an email or voicemail message, we will get back to you when we re-open on Tuesday.

Thank you and enjoy the holiday!

Popular Assignment Topics: Antibullying Programs in Schools

Here at the library, we take notice when we get asked about the same assignment topic multiple times. One of those topics is antibullying programs in schools. Here are some tips on how to do research on these programs.

On the library homepage select Subject Guides.

Select the Education Subject guide. Here, you can learn more about Scholarly or Peer Reviewed articles in the center column.

Look at the left hand column under the heading “Searching for a topic? Use databases.”

You want to select databases here to search for your topic. I suggest starting with Education Source and ERIC.

image of education subject guide showing where the links to Education Source and ERIC databases are located

In the database, select Advanced Search. Here you can break down your search topic into multiple keywords like antibullying AND programs. Down below where it lets you limit your search, you can check the box to limit results to Scholarly/Peer Reviewed and then you can hit search. You can then go through the search results to see which articles are available in our library and fit your assignment needs.

image of advanced search in Education Source

Where is the full-text article? Is the date for the article fairly recent and you don’t see a link to view the full-text? The article may be too new to be available online yet. Instead, do you see a link to Full-text Finder? Click Full Text Finder to search the rest of the library to see if we have the article elsewhere in our collections.

image of search results in Education Source