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Government Information Portal

Research tips and links to various government information sources.

Citing Government Sources

Learning how to cite legal documents and Congressional records is an important aspect of scholarly research and writing. Learn to decipher the elements of information you have in your document to help you cite properly and accurately. Many government publications and websites can be cited using the standard citation style required by your professor or discipline, but make sure the guide you use is the latest edition.

Some databases provide links to citations in a variety of formats. ALWAYS double-check to see that the citation style is the current version as not all citations will be updated.

When deciding between a person and agency as author, it is common practice to cite the agency as authorial responsibility, but always check!


APA Citation Style, 6th edition: Government Publication (George Washington University)

APA Style-Government Report (Trinity College)


Citing Government Information Sources Using MLA (University of Nevada, Reno)

How to Cite Government Information: MLA (Cornell University)


Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide for Government Publications (Bowdoin University)

CSE (sciences)

Name-Year Documentation for government publications (U Wisconsin site)


The Bluebook: a Uniform System of Citation (see CSUSM Research Help Desk)

University of Chicago Law Review Style Sheet (known as the Maroon Book) Reviews legal citation formats and citing sources commonly found in law research.

Introduction to Basic Legal Citation (Cornell University)


Various Federal government agencies provide help in citing their materials. The formats may NOT be in the most current version of the style manual, so review carefully. Here are some sample sites:

Citation Generator

DocsCite (Specifically for government documents from University of Arizona, using APA or MLA)