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Quick Citation Guides
Handbooks at the library, hanging indent.
- Annotated Bibliographies
MLA (Modern Language Association) style is widely used in the humanities, particularly by disciplines that study literature, arts, and critical theory.
- MLA Style Guide (9th ed.) This printable handout from Cal State LA Library explains how to create in-text citations, gives examples of how to create references for different formats, and presents a checklist for formatting your paper.
- MLA Interactive Practice Template Use this digital template from MLA to help you create citations.
- Sample MLA Style Papers See sample student papers and works cited lists at the MLA Style Center .
- MLA Style from Excelsior OWL Learn the basics of MLA style including in-text citations and works cited lists from Excelsior University Online Writing Lab.
- Numbered sections throughout for quick navigation.
Introduction to Citation Styles: MLA 9th ed.
This video (3:39) from California State University Dominguez Hills Library reviews basic citation principles for MLA 9th edition.
" Introduction to Citation Styles: MLA 9th ed ." courtesy of CSU Dominguez Hills licensed under Creative Commons Attribution (reuse allowed).
- MLA Style Tutorial Practice your MLA skills with this interactive tutorial from the Modern Language Association.
- Use 1” margins at the top, bottom, left, and right sides of the page.
- Right-align the running head at the top of every page, include your last name and page numbers.
- Use a readable typeface like Times New Roman in 11-13 points.
- Align the text at the left margin only.
- Double-space the entire paper, including quotations, notes, and the list of works cited.
- Indent .5” from the left margin at beginning of each paragraph.
- Leave one space not two after a period or other concluding punctuation.
- In the top left write your name, instructor’s name, course, and date (Day Month Year with no commas ie. 3 January 2023). Start a new line for each item.
- Double-space between the date and the title.
- The title is centered with no bold, underlining, quotation marks, or end punctuation marks.
Works Cited Checklist:
- Place the works cited list at the end of the paper and after endnotes if they are included.
- Title the page Work Cited if the list contains only one entry.
- Double-space between the title heading (Works Cited) and first entry.
- Begin each entry flush with the left margin.
- If the entry is more than one line, create a hanging indent with subsequent lines indented .5” from the left margin.
- Entries are arranged alphabetically by author's last name or by the title if the author name is missing.
- If you are using multiple works by the same author, write the author name for the first entry and use an em dash (---three hyphens) in the author element in subsequent entries. List the entries alphabetically by the title of the source.
A hanging indent is used to format the list of references at the end of an academic paper. If the reference is longer than one line, the first line aligns with the left margin, but the subsequent lines are indented a half inch. This video (2:17) explains how to automate hanging indents in Microsoft 365 Word and Google Docs.
The MLA Handbook 9th ed. was published in 2021 and is the latest style guide from the Modern Language Association. Ask your instructor which edition you should use for your assignments.
- What's New in MLA 9th ed.? This Cal State LA handout lists the most significant changes in the MLA Handbook 9th ed.
The MLA Handbook 8th ed. was published in 2018. Ask your instructor if you should use the newest edition or the 8th ed. because many instructors continue to use older editions despite new publications.
- What’s New in the MLA 8th Ed.? Briefly explains changes and additions that came with the 8th edition in 2016.
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MLA Citation Guide: Citing in the body of your paper
- "Works Cited" List Outlined
- MLA Online Tutorials
- Citing in the body of your paper
- Books and book chapters
In-Text Citations (see pages 54 - 58, 116 - 128 of the MLA Handbook, 8th Edition)
In the body of your paper, use parenthetical documentation (Chapter 5 of MLA Handbook ). The purpose of your documentation is for your readers to be able to locate the sources which you cite in your text when they look at your bibliography ("Works Cited") located at the end of your paper. You give the minimum of information necessary for your readers to do this, such as just the author's last name and the page(s) to which you refer.
- When you omit the author's name in your sentence:
This point has already been argued (Tannen 178-85).
- When you include the author's name in your sentence:
Tannen has argued this point (178-85).
- When you cite more than one work by the same author (shortened version of title is acceptable, using first words:
Shakespeare's King Lear has been called a "comedy of the grotesque" (Frye, Anatomy 237).
- When the work has more than one author:
Others hold the opposite point of view (e.g., Kerrigan and Braden 210-15).
- When the work has no author, use title (shortened form is ok) of article or book:
A New York Times editorial called Ralph Ellison "a writer of universal reach" ("Death").
- If your source uses explicit paragraph numbers rather than page numbers -- as some publications on the web do -- give the relevant number or numbers, preceded by the label par. or pars . Change the label appropriately if another kind of part is numbered in the source instead of pages, such as sections ( sec., secs .) or chapters ( ch., chs .). If the author's name begins such a citation, place a comma after the name.
There is little evidence here for the claim that "Eagleton has belittled the gains of postmodernism" (Chan, par.41).
- When a source has no page numbers or any other kind of part number, no number should be given in a parenthetical citation. Do not count unnumbered paragraphs or other parts.
"As we read we . . . construct the terrain of a book" (Hollmichel), something that is more difficult when the text reflows on a screen.
- In parenthetical citations of a literary work available in multiple editions, such as commonly studied novel, play, or poem, it is often helpful to provide division numbers in addition to, or instead of, page numbers, so that readers can find references in any edition of the work.
Austen begins the final chapter of Mansfield Park with a dismissive "Let other pens dwell," thereby announcing her decision to avoid dwelling on the professions of love made by Fanny and Edmund (533; vol.3, ch.17).
- For works in time-based media, such as audio and video recordings, cite relevant time or range of times. Give the numbers of the hours, minutes and seconds as displayed on your media player, separating the numbers with colons.
Buffy's promise that "there's not going to be incidents like at my old school" is obviously not one on which she can follow through ("Buffy" 00:03:16-17).
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Rubio-9/27@1:30: Creating Citations in MLA Format
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- Writing & Citing in MLA
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In MLA format, you briefly identify your sources in the text of your paper, then give the full information in the Works Cited list at the end of the paper.
Listed below are several resources to help you use MLA format:
MLA Documentation Guide from ACC Library Services. Also available in PDF format .
MLA Style Center -- Writing resources from the Modern Langauge Association including a Works Cited quick guide, a digital citation tool, instructions for formatting in-text citations, and more.
OWL Purdue MLA Style Guide -- Produced by Purdue University, this site covers the general format and guidelines of MLA Style and gives detailed information about constructing in-text MLA citations and creating works cited lists.
Excelsior Online Writi ng Lab MLA Style Guide -- Produced by Excelsior College, this guide provides information regarding MLA basic formatting, in-text citations, and the Works Cited entries.
Popular Online Citation Generators -- Listed below are several online citation generators that you may find helpful. Remember to always check the citations that these generators create for accuracy before adding them to your Works Cited list!
- CiteThisForMe Online citation creation tool
- Citation Machine Online citation creation tool
- EasyBib Online citation creation tool
Edmunds, Anne. "Credible Hulk." 2019, Flickr https://flic.kr/p/2ea9z63.
- Citing Sources Video Tutorial Video tutorial covering the basic parts of an MLA citation and Works Cited page.
- Using Citation Tools Video Tutorial Video tutorial highlighting how to correctly use database and other online citation generator tools.
- Using a Database Email Tool Video Tutorial Video tutorial describing how to use a databases's email tool to email articles and their citations to yourself.
- How to Create a Hanging Indent in Word
- How to Create a Hanging Indent in Google Docs
- How to Set-up Your Software for MLA Format (Word, Mac, Google Docs)
Academic Honesty/Plagiarism Tutorial
ACC Libraries Tutorial: Academic Honesty/Plagiarism
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- Last Updated: Sep 27, 2023 10:24 AM
- URL: https://researchguides.austincc.edu/c.php?g=1350599
MLA Format Citation Full Guide
MLA is a common academic formatting style developed by the Modern Language Association. It is widely used in academic papers in humanities and as a guideline for referencing original sources. In this article, our essay writer service have prepared a complete guide to cite sources according to the MLA 8th edition.
Depending on the type of the source, its specific characteristics (e.g. unknown author’s name), and other factors, citations in MLA style may differ by their form. Further into this MLA 8 citation guide, we are going to go over all the types of sources and cases, and provide clear examples of proper referencing. But first, let’s look at core elements that are typically included in every MLA style citation:
Author name(s). “Title of the Source”. Title of container, other contributors, version, numbers, publisher, publication date, location.
Now, let’s see the specific rules that apply to each of the core elements of an MLA citation.
- Always put the surname first, then separate it by a comma and list the first name and any initials (for example, Black, Jacob K.)
- If the author is unknown, you can use the name of the organization responsible or start with the title of the source (for example, The Modern Language Association. “Works Cited: A Quick Guide”... or “Works Cited: A Quick Guide”...)
- When there are 2 authors, put the first author’s name in inverted form, and follow it with the other author’s name in regular form (for example, Black, Jacob K., and Chris Thorn)
- If there are 3 or more authors, put the first author’s name in inverted form and follow it with “et al” (for example, Black, Jacob K., et al)
- You are allowed to mention online usernames or pseudonyms instead of real names (for example, Pewresearch or Digiday)
- You can also include the names of translators or editors here, but their names should be followed by their relevant titles – “editor” or “translator” (for example, Black, Jacob K., editor or Thorn, Chris, translator)
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Title of the Source
- Put the title in quotation marks when the source is part of a short work (for example, a short article)
- Larger works such as books, television shows, and websites should be italicized
- If the source’s title is unknown, replace it in your citation with a brief description, without quotation marks and not italicized (for example, Website Home Page, Review Covering Multiple Books, etc.)
Title of Container
- Can include multiple container titles when necessary
- Only list the most relevant contributors to your work
- Before the name of each contributor, specify his/her role (for example, produced by Jacob Black)
- Refers to a specific edition, version, or revision of the source
- This part of the citation should all be in lower case
- This element refers to sources that appear in a sequence, for example, TV seasons or episodes, issues, and volumes
- When there are multiple publishers, they all need to be listed in the citation and separated with a slash (/)
Example: Oxford University Press/Cambridge University Press
- The information you provide here depends on the source’s type
- If there is more than one publication date (e.g. the source was numerously republished) you only need to cite the date of publication of the one you have used
- In certain cases, it is appropriate to cite a date range
Depending on the type of source, this element can stand for:
- Printed source – page number(s)
- Online source – URL
- DVD – disk number
- Object – place it is held
- Performance – city and/or venue
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MLA Referencing: In-Text Citations
An in-text citation refers to the use of a direct quote or a paraphrase of information taken from another source in the body of the text. In-text citations are used to add value to your work and support your ideas.
General rules for each MLA in-text citation:
- It should correspond to its relevant reference from the works cited page.
- Every citation should contain the author’s last name and the page (or range of pages) where the specific quote or information is found in the original source.
- The author’s name can either be a part of the sentence or included in parentheses directly after the quote.
- The page number or numbers should be included in parentheses after the quote, either alone or following the author’s last name.
Example of a citation where the author’s name is a part of the sentence: To portray the attitude towards women in the American society of the ’20s, Fitzgerald has his character Daisy say “And I hope she'll be a fool — that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool” (21).
Example of a citation that doesn’t mention the author’s name in the sentence: In the novel, we see a phrase that depicts the attitude towards women in the American society of the 20's “And I hope she'll be a fool — that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool” (Fitzgerald 21).
Now, let’s take a look at how an MLA in-text citation is formed in different cases:
More than One Author
When there are 2-3 authors, you can list all the names, followed by the page number in parentheses.
MLA in text citation example: “Everything goes away, Jack Sawyer, like the moon. Everything comes back, like the moon” (King, Steven, and Straub 78).
When there are more than 3 authors, only list the last name of the first one and type “et al.”
MLA in text citation example: “He’d thought about it, why mundane kids might come to the Academy. Mundanes would have to choose to give up their parents, their families, their former lives. Unless, of course, they already had no parents and no families” (Clare et al. 39).
If the author of the source is unknown, instead of stating his last name in parentheses after the quote: make the entire title italicized, put the article or webpage in quotation marks, or the shortened title within quotation marks.
Example: In the novel Diary of an Oxygen Thief, the feeling of deep satisfaction after an obviously wrong or immoral action is described with the quote: “It’s like when you hear serial killers say they feel no regret, no remorse for all the people they killed. I was like that. Loved it.” (5)
If you didn’t include the book’s name in the sentence:
Example: In the novel ( Diary of an Oxygen Thief 5 ).
Example: According to the “MLA Citation Guide” “…” (4) or: (“MLA Citation Guide” 4)
Authors With Multiple Cited Works
If you refer to multiple works of the same author, include the author’s name and a shortened title of the particular source, along with the page number.
Example: (Fitzgerald, I’d Die for You 35)
Authors With the Same Surname
In case you refer to several works whose authors have the same surnames, when making in-text citations, put an initial before the author’s last name.
Example: (B. MacDonald 17) and (J. MacDonald 56)
No Page Number
When you are making a citation and don’t know the exact page number, use other metrics such as chapters or paragraphs.
Example: (MacDonald, ch. 4).
When there are no numbered patterns at all, mention only the name of the author.
Citing a Quote or Parenthetical
In this scenario, type “qtd. in” before the author’s name.
Example: (qtd. in Fitzgerald 65)
Citing Audio-Visual Sources
When referring to audio-visual sources, instead of the page number, you need to indicate a time stamp in the following format – hh:mm:ss.
Example: (Mitchell 01:22:12)
How to Cite Different Source Types
While the MLA Works Cited page might have highly variable entries based on their source types, in-text citations mostly look similar. The biggest change applies when the author is not known, or if the cited source is not printed. Below is a comprehensive guide on how to cite sources in MLA based on their type.
How to Cite Books in MLA Format
- Authors’ names — when there are 2 authors, only the first one’s name needs to be inverted. The next one should be introduced by the word “and” and be in standard form. When there are more than 3 authors, you only need to indicate the first one (last and then first name) and put “et al” after it.
- Title — all words (except for small words) should start with capitalized letters, and the whole title needs to be italicized.
- Title of containers, contributors, versions, and numbers are optional elements. This information should be provided if it is valuable and relevant to the reader.
The standard MLA book citation format is as follows:
Author’s last name, first name. Title . Title of container, Contributors, Version, Numbers, Publisher, Year of Publication.
Example: Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. Scribner, 2004.
How to Cite Edited and Translated Books in MLA Format
If you refer to a book that was edited or translated, there are two ways to indicate this in your citation:
- List the translator or editor in the author’s name section and specify their role (e.g. “editor” or “translator”). Choose this method if your work focuses on translation or editing.
- Add the names of translators or editors in the contributors' section of the citation.
Here are two formats you can follow:
1.Last name, first name, translator/editor. Title . Title of container, Contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Year of publication.
Example: Clarke, Alan R, translator. The Alchemist. By Paulo Coelho, HarperCollins, 1993.
2.Last name, first name. Title . Title of container, edited/translated by Contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Year of publication.
Example: Coelho, Paulo. The Alchemist. Translated by A. Clarke, HarperCollins, 1993.
How to Cite E-Books in MLA Format
To cite an e-book, you should use the standard format for book citations and specify the e-book identity in the version section. Follow this template:
Author’s last name, first name. Title . Title of container, Contributors, edition, e-book Number, Publisher, Year of Publication.
Example: Troy, Ben N., et al. A Guide to Citation. 2nd ed, e-book, New York Publishers, 2010.
How to Cite Articles in MLA Format
Use the following format to cite articles from different sources, including journals, magazines, and newspapers:
Name of Author(s). “Article Title”. Title of Container, contributors, version, numbers, date of publication, location, Title of database, DOI or URL
Things to keep in mind:
- Title — the title of the article is put in quotation marks and does not need to be italicized.
- Title of container – here, you need to provide the name of the source (e.g. newspaper, magazine, or journal) where the article was published. It has to be italicized.
- Version — this section refers to types within each section of the publication.
- Numbers — in this section, you need to specify the issue number (no.) or volume number (vo.).
- Date of publication — for newspapers and magazines, specify the day, month, and year (e.g. 9 December 2012). And for journals, mention only the season and year (e.g. June 2018).
- Location — this section is devoted to the article’s page number(s).
- Title of database, DOI or URL — only included for online articles.
Online example: Bradshaw, Peter. “Oscars 2020 predictions: who will win?”. The Guardian , 7 Feb 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/film/2020/feb/07/oscars-2020-winners-losers-predictions-peter-bradshaw.
Journal example: Gringe, Lea. “Science Fiction Works for the Development of the Aerospace Sector.” The Popularisation of Space , vol. 41, Aug. 2017, pp. 42-47.
Magazine/Newspaper example: Smith, John. “Obama inaugurated as President.” Time , 21 Jan. 2009: 21-23. Print.
How to Cite Non-Print Material
While most of your references will probably be printed sources like books, articles, and others, in some cases you may also need to cite alternative non-print materials. In this part of our guide, we will focus on the general rules of citing different non-print sources and will provide a clear MLA citation example for each.
Image in MLA Format
Standard structure: Author’s last name, other names. “Title of Image”. Website Title , contributors, reproduction, number, date, URL.
Example: Gilpin, Laura. “Terraced Houses, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico.” Library of Congress , Reproduction no. LC-USZ62-102170, 1939, https://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/90716883/.
Film in MLA Format
Standard structure: Director’s name, director. “Title of film”. Contributors, Distributor , year of release. Medium
Please note: although this standard structure typically works, in some cases you may swap the title and name of the director in the case that your work focuses more on the film rather than on its director: “Title of film”. Directed by director name, contributors, Distributor , year of release. Medium
Also, note that mentioning the medium is not required in MLA 8, but you are allowed to mention it since it is useful information for the reader. If the film is taken from the Web, replace the medium with its relevant URL.
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Example: Hitchcock, Alfred, director. “Psycho”. Performances by Anthony Perkins and Janet Leigh, Paramount Pictures , 1960, DVD
TV Series in MLA Format
Standard structure: “Episode Title”. Program Title , created by Name, contributors, season number, episode number. Network, Year of Publication.
Example: “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.” Game of Thrones , written by Bryan Cogman, directed by David Nutter, season 8, episode 2, HBO, 2019
Music in MLA Format
Standard structure: Author’s name(s). “Title of the Track”. Title of the Album , other contributors, version, Record Label, Year of Publication
Example: Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. “Shallow.” A Star Is Born , Interscope, 2018.
How to Cite a Web Page in MLA Format
Standard structure: Author’s last name, first name or organization title. “Title of page/document”. Title of overall webpage , date, URL.
Example: Woodford, Kate. “Outlooks and Forecasts (The Language of Predictions)”. A Blog from Cambridge Dictionary , 5 Feb 2020, https://dictionaryblog.cambridge.org/2020/02/05/outlooks-and-forecasts-the-language-of-predictions/.
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MLA Works Cited Page: Books
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MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (9 th ed.), offers examples for the general format of MLA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the Works Cited page.
When you are gathering book sources, be sure to make note of the following bibliographic items: the author name(s), other contributors such as translators or editors, the book’s title, editions of the book, the publication date, the publisher, and the pagination.
The 8 th edition of the MLA handbook highlights principles over prescriptive practices. Essentially, a writer will need to take note of primary elements in every source, such as author, title, etc. and then assort them in a general format. Thus, by using this methodology, a writer will be able to cite any source regardless of whether it’s included in this list.
Please note these changes in the new edition:
- Commas are used instead of periods between Publisher, Publication Date, and Pagination.
- Medium is no longer necessary.
- Containers are now a part of the MLA process. Commas should be used after container titles.
- DOIs should be used instead of URLS when available.
- Use the term “Accessed” instead of listing the date or the abbreviation, “n.d."
Below is the general format for any citation:
Author. Title. Title of container (do not list container for standalone books, e.g. novels), Other contributors (translators or editors), Version (edition), Number (vol. and/or no.), Publisher, Publication Date, Location (pages, paragraphs URL or DOI). 2 nd container’s title, Other contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Publication date, Location, Date of Access (if applicable).
Basic Book Format
The author’s name or a book with a single author's name appears in last name, first name format. The basic form for a book citation is:
Last Name, First Name. Title of Book . City of Publication, Publisher, Publication Date.
* Note: the City of Publication should only be used if the book was published before 1900, if the publisher has offices in more than one country, or if the publisher is unknown in North America.
Book with One Author
Gleick, James. Chaos: Making a New Science . Penguin, 1987.
Henley, Patricia. The Hummingbird House . MacMurray, 1999.
Book with More Than One Author
When a book has two authors, order the authors in the same way they are presented in the book. Start by listing the first name that appears on the book in last name, first name format; subsequent author names appear in normal order (first name last name format).
Gillespie, Paula, and Neal Lerner. The Allyn and Bacon Guide to Peer Tutoring . Allyn and Bacon, 2000.
If there are three or more authors, list only the first author followed by the phrase et al. (Latin for "and others") in place of the subsequent authors' names. (Note that there is a period after “al” in “et al.” Also note that there is never a period after the “et” in “et al.”).
Wysocki, Anne Frances, et al. Writing New Media: Theory and Applications for Expanding the Teaching of Composition . Utah State UP, 2004.
Two or More Books by the Same Author
List works alphabetically by title. (Remember to ignore articles like A, An, and The.) Provide the author’s name in last name, first name format for the first entry only. For each subsequent entry by the same author, use three hyphens and a period.
Palmer, William J. Dickens and New Historicism . St. Martin's, 1997.
---. The Films of the Eighties: A Social History . Southern Illinois UP, 1993.
Book by a Corporate Author or Organization
A corporate author may include a commission, a committee, a government agency, or a group that does not identify individual members on the title page.
List the names of corporate authors in the place where an author’s name typically appears at the beginning of the entry.
American Allergy Association. Allergies in Children . Random House, 1998.
When the author and publisher are the same, skip the author, and list the title first. Then, list the corporate author only as the publisher.
Fair Housing—Fair Lending. Aspen Law & Business, 1985.
Book with No Author
List by title of the book. Incorporate these entries alphabetically just as you would with works that include an author name. For example, the following entry might appear between entries of works written by Dean, Shaun and Forsythe, Jonathan.
Encyclopedia of Indiana . Somerset, 1993.
Remember that for an in-text (parenthetical) citation of a book with no author, you should provide the name of the work in the signal phrase and the page number in parentheses. You may also use a shortened version of the title of the book accompanied by the page number. For more information see the In-text Citations for Print Sources with No Known Author section of In-text Citations: The Basics .
A Translated Book
If you want to emphasize the work rather than the translator, cite as you would any other book. Add “translated by” and follow with the name(s) of the translator(s).
Foucault, Michel. Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason . Translated by Richard Howard, Vintage-Random House, 1988.
If you want to focus on the translation, list the translator as the author. In place of the author’s name, the translator’s name appears. His or her name is followed by the label, “translator.” If the author of the book does not appear in the title of the book, include the name, with a “By” after the title of the book and before the publisher. Note that this type of citation is less common and should only be used for papers or writing in which translation plays a central role.
Howard, Richard, translator. Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason . By Michel Foucault, Vintage-Random House, 1988.
Books may be republished due to popularity without becoming a new edition. New editions are typically revisions of the original work. For books that originally appeared at an earlier date and that have been republished at a later one, insert the original publication date before the publication information.
For books that are new editions (i.e. different from the first or other editions of the book), see An Edition of a Book below.
Butler, Judith. Gender Trouble . 1990. Routledge, 1999.
Erdrich, Louise. Love Medicine . 1984. Perennial-Harper, 1993.
An Edition of a Book
There are two types of editions in book publishing: a book that has been published more than once in different editions and a book that is prepared by someone other than the author (typically an editor).
A Subsequent Edition
Cite the book as you normally would, but add the number of the edition after the title.
Crowley, Sharon, and Debra Hawhee. Ancient Rhetorics for Contemporary Students . 3rd ed., Pearson, 2004.
A Work Prepared by an Editor
Cite the book as you normally would, but add the editor after the title with the label "edited by."
Bronte, Charlotte. Jane Eyre, edited by Margaret Smith, Oxford UP, 1998.
Note that the format for citing sources with important contributors with editor-like roles follows the same basic template:
...adapted by John Doe...
Finally, in the event that the source features a contributor that cannot be described with a past-tense verb and the word "by" (e.g., "edited by"), you may instead use a noun followed by a comma, like so:
...guest editor, Jane Smith...
Anthology or Collection (e.g. Collection of Essays)
To cite the entire anthology or collection, list by editor(s) followed by a comma and "editor" or, for multiple editors, "editors." This sort of entry is somewhat rare. If you are citing a particular piece within an anthology or collection (more common), see A Work in an Anthology, Reference, or Collection below.
Hill, Charles A., and Marguerite Helmers, editors. Defining Visual Rhetorics . Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2004.
Peterson, Nancy J., editor. Toni Morrison: Critical and Theoretical Approaches . Johns Hopkins UP, 1997.
A Work in an Anthology, Reference, or Collection
Works may include an essay in an edited collection or anthology, or a chapter of a book. The basic form is for this sort of citation is as follows:
Last name, First name. "Title of Essay." Title of Collection , edited by Editor's Name(s), Publisher, Year, Page range of entry.
Harris, Muriel. "Talk to Me: Engaging Reluctant Writers." A Tutor's Guide: Helping Writers One to One , edited by Ben Rafoth, Heinemann, 2000, pp. 24-34.
Swanson, Gunnar. "Graphic Design Education as a Liberal Art: Design and Knowledge in the University and The 'Real World.'" The Education of a Graphic Designer , edited by Steven Heller, Allworth Press, 1998, pp. 13-24.
Note on Cross-referencing Several Items from One Anthology: If you cite more than one essay from the same edited collection, MLA indicates you may cross-reference within your works cited list in order to avoid writing out the publishing information for each separate essay. You should consider this option if you have several references from a single text. To do so, include a separate entry for the entire collection listed by the editor's name as below:
Rose, Shirley K, and Irwin Weiser, editors. The Writing Program Administrator as Researcher . Heinemann, 1999.
Then, for each individual essay from the collection, list the author's name in last name, first name format, the title of the essay, the editor's last name, and the page range:
L'Eplattenier, Barbara. "Finding Ourselves in the Past: An Argument for Historical Work on WPAs." Rose and Weiser, pp. 131-40.
Peeples, Tim. "'Seeing' the WPA With/Through Postmodern Mapping." Rose and Weiser, pp. 153-67.
Please note: When cross-referencing items in the works cited list, alphabetical order should be maintained for the entire list.
Poem or Short Story Examples :
Burns, Robert. "Red, Red Rose." 100 Best-Loved Poems, edited by Philip Smith, Dover, 1995, p. 26.
Kincaid, Jamaica. "Girl." The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories , edited by Tobias Wolff, Vintage, 1994, pp. 306-07.
If the specific literary work is part of the author's own collection (all of the works have the same author), then there will be no editor to reference:
Whitman, Walt. "I Sing the Body Electric." Selected Poems, Dover, 1991, pp. 12-19.
Carter, Angela. "The Tiger's Bride." Burning Your Boats: The Collected Stories, Penguin, 1995, pp. 154-69.
Article in a Reference Book (e.g. Encyclopedias, Dictionaries)
For entries in encyclopedias, dictionaries, and other reference works, cite the entry name as you would any other work in a collection but do not include the publisher information. Also, if the reference book is organized alphabetically, as most are, do not list the volume or the page number of the article or item.
"Ideology." The American Heritage Dictionary. 3rd ed. 1997.
A Multivolume Work
When citing only one volume of a multivolume work, include the volume number after the work's title, or after the work's editor or translator.
Quintilian. Institutio Oratoria . Translated by H. E. Butler, vol. 2, Loeb-Harvard UP, 1980.
When citing more than one volume of a multivolume work, cite the total number of volumes in the work. Also, be sure in your in-text citation to provide both the volume number and page number(s) ( see "Citing Multivolume Works" on our in-text citations resource .)
Quintilian. Institutio Oratoria . Translated by H. E. Butler, Loeb-Harvard UP, 1980. 4 vols.
If the volume you are using has its own title, cite the book without referring to the other volumes as if it were an independent publication.
Churchill, Winston S. The Age of Revolution . Dodd, 1957.
An Introduction, Preface, Foreword, or Afterword
When citing an introduction, a preface, a foreword, or an afterword, write the name of the author(s) of the piece you are citing. Then give the name of the part being cited, which should not be italicized or enclosed in quotation marks; in italics, provide the name of the work and the name of the author of the introduction/preface/foreword/afterword. Finish the citation with the details of publication and page range.
Farrell, Thomas B. Introduction. Norms of Rhetorical Culture , by Farrell, Yale UP, 1993, pp. 1-13.
If the writer of the piece is different from the author of the complete work , then write the full name of the principal work's author after the word "By." For example, if you were to cite Hugh Dalziel Duncan’s introduction of Kenneth Burke’s book Permanence and Change, you would write the entry as follows:
Duncan, Hugh Dalziel. Introduction. Permanence and Change: An Anatomy of Purpose, by Kenneth Burke, 1935, 3rd ed., U of California P, 1984, pp. xiii-xliv.
Book Published Before 1900
Original copies of books published before 1900 are usually defined by their place of publication rather than the publisher. Unless you are using a newer edition, cite the city of publication where you would normally cite the publisher.
Thoreau, Henry David. Excursions . Boston, 1863.
Italicize “The Bible” and follow it with the version you are using. Remember that your in-text (parenthetical citation) should include the name of the specific edition of the Bible, followed by an abbreviation of the book, the chapter and verse(s). (See Citing the Bible at In-Text Citations: The Basics .)
The Bible. Authorized King James Version , Oxford UP, 1998.
The Bible. The New Oxford Annotated Version , 3rd ed., Oxford UP, 2001.
The New Jerusalem Bible. Edited by Susan Jones, Doubleday, 1985.
A Government Publication
Cite the author of the publication if the author is identified. Otherwise, start with the name of the national government, followed by the agency (including any subdivisions or agencies) that serves as the organizational author. For congressional documents, be sure to include the number of the Congress and the session when the hearing was held or resolution passed as well as the report number. US government documents are typically published by the Government Printing Office.
United States, Congress, Senate, Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Hearing on the Geopolitics of Oil . Government Printing Office, 2007. 110th Congress, 1st session, Senate Report 111-8.
United States, Government Accountability Office. Climate Change: EPA and DOE Should Do More to Encourage Progress Under Two Voluntary Programs . Government Printing Office, 2006.
Cite the title and publication information for the pamphlet just as you would a book without an author. Pamphlets and promotional materials commonly feature corporate authors (commissions, committees, or other groups that does not provide individual group member names). If the pamphlet you are citing has no author, cite as directed below. If your pamphlet has an author or a corporate author, put the name of the author (last name, first name format) or corporate author in the place where the author name typically appears at the beginning of the entry. (See also Books by a Corporate Author or Organization above.)
Women's Health: Problems of the Digestive System . American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, 2006.
Your Rights Under California Welfare Programs . California Department of Social Services, 2007.
Dissertations and Master's Theses
Dissertations and master's theses may be used as sources whether published or not. Unlike previous editions, MLA 8 specifies no difference in style for published/unpublished works.
The main elements of a dissertation citation are the same as those for a book: author name(s), title (italicized) , and publication date. Conclude with an indication of the document type (e.g., "PhD dissertation"). The degree-granting institution may be included before the document type (though this is not required). If the dissertation was accessed through an online repository, include it as the second container after all the other elements.
Bishop, Karen Lynn. Documenting Institutional Identity: Strategic Writing in the IUPUI Comprehensive Campaign . 2002. Purdue University, PhD dissertation.
Bile, Jeffrey. Ecology, Feminism, and a Revised Critical Rhetoric: Toward a Dialectical Partnership . 2005. Ohio University, PhD dissertation.
Mitchell, Mark. The Impact of Product Quality Reducing Events on the Value of Brand-Name Capital: Evidence from Airline Crashes and the 1982 Tylenol Poisonings. 1987. PhD dissertation. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses.
List the names of corporate authors in the place where an author’s name typically appears at the beginning of the entry if the author and publisher are not the same.
Fair Housing—Fair Lending. Aspen Law & Business, 1985.
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How to Cite an Essay
Last Updated: February 4, 2023 References
This article was co-authored by Diya Chaudhuri, PhD and by wikiHow staff writer, Jennifer Mueller, JD . Diya Chaudhuri holds a PhD in Creative Writing (specializing in Poetry) from Georgia State University. She has over 5 years of experience as a writing tutor and instructor for both the University of Florida and Georgia State University. There are 10 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 547,879 times.
If you're writing a research paper, whether as a student or a professional researcher, you might want to use an essay as a source. You'll typically find essays published in another source, such as an edited book or collection. When you discuss or quote from the essay in your paper, use an in-text citation to relate back to the full entry listed in your list of references at the end of your paper. While the information in the full reference entry is basically the same, the format differs depending on whether you're using the Modern Language Association (MLA), American Psychological Association (APA), or Chicago citation method.
Template and Examples
- Example: Potter, Harry.
- Example: Potter, Harry. "My Life with Voldemort."
- Example: Potter, Harry. "My Life with Voldemort." Great Thoughts from Hogwarts Alumni , by Bathilda Backshot,
- Example: Potter, Harry. "My Life with Voldemort." Great Thoughts from Hogwarts Alumni , by Bathilda Backshot, Hogwarts Press, 2019,
- Example: Potter, Harry. "My Life with Voldemort." Great Thoughts from Hogwarts Alumni , by Bathilda Backshot, Hogwarts Press, 2019, pp. 22-42.
MLA Works Cited Entry Format:
LastName, FirstName. "Title of Essay." Title of Collection , by FirstName Last Name, Publisher, Year, pp. ##-##.
- For example, you might write: While the stories may seem like great adventures, the students themselves were terribly frightened to confront Voldemort (Potter 28).
- If you include the author's name in the text of your paper, you only need the page number where the referenced material can be found in the parenthetical at the end of your sentence.
- If you have several authors with the same last name, include each author's first initial in your in-text citation to differentiate them.
- For several titles by the same author, include a shortened version of the title after the author's name (if the title isn't mentioned in your text).
- Example: Granger, H.
- Example: Granger, H. (2018).
- Example: Granger, H. (2018). Adventures in time turning.
- Example: Granger, H. (2018). Adventures in time turning. In M. McGonagall (Ed.), Reflections on my time at Hogwarts
- Example: Granger, H. (2018). Adventures in time turning. In M. McGonagall (Ed.), Reflections on my time at Hogwarts (pp. 92-130). Hogwarts Press.
APA Reference List Entry Format:
LastName, I. (Year). Title of essay. In I. LastName (Ed.), Title of larger work (pp. ##-##). Publisher.
- For example, you might write: By using a time turner, a witch or wizard can appear to others as though they are actually in two places at once (Granger, 2018).
- If you use the author's name in the text of your paper, include the parenthetical with the year immediately after the author's name. For example, you might write: Although technically against the rules, Granger (2018) maintains that her use of a time turner was sanctioned by the head of her house.
- Add page numbers if you quote directly from the source. Simply add a comma after the year, then type the page number or page range where the quoted material can be found, using the abbreviation "p." for a single page or "pp." for a range of pages.
- Example: Weasley, Ron.
- Example: Weasley, Ron. "Best Friend to a Hero."
- Example: Weasley, Ron. "Best Friend to a Hero." In Harry Potter: Wizard, Myth, Legend , edited by Xenophilius Lovegood, 80-92.
- Example: Weasley, Ron. "Best Friend to a Hero." In Harry Potter: Wizard, Myth, Legend , edited by Xenophilius Lovegood, 80-92. Ottery St. Catchpole: Quibbler Books, 2018.
' Chicago Bibliography Format:
LastName, FirstName. "Title of Essay." In Title of Book or Essay Collection , edited by FirstName LastName, ##-##. Location: Publisher, Year.
- Example: Ron Weasley, "Best Friend to a Hero," in Harry Potter: Wizard, Myth, Legend , edited by Xenophilius Lovegood, 80-92 (Ottery St. Catchpole: Quibbler Books, 2018).
- After the first footnote, use a shortened footnote format that includes only the author's last name, the title of the essay, and the page number or page range where the referenced material appears.
Tip: If you use the Chicago author-date system for in-text citation, use the same in-text citation method as APA style.
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- ↑ https://style.mla.org/essay-in-authored-textbook/
- ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_works_cited_page_books.html
- ↑ https://utica.libguides.com/c.php?g=703243&p=4991646
- ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_in_text_citations_the_basics.html
- ↑ https://guides.libraries.psu.edu/apaquickguide/intext
- ↑ https://guides.himmelfarb.gwu.edu/c.php?g=27779&p=170363
- ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/apa_style/apa_formatting_and_style_guide/in_text_citations_the_basics.html
- ↑ http://libguides.heidelberg.edu/chicago/book/chapter
- ↑ https://librarybestbets.fairfield.edu/citationguides/chicagonotes-bibliography#CollectionofEssays
- ↑ https://libguides.heidelberg.edu/chicago/book/chapter
About This Article
To cite an essay using MLA format, include the name of the author and the page number of the source you’re citing in the in-text citation. For example, if you’re referencing page 123 from a book by John Smith, you would include “(Smith 123)” at the end of the sentence. Alternatively, include the information as part of the sentence, such as “Rathore and Chauhan determined that Himalayan brown bears eat both plants and animals (6652).” Then, make sure that all your in-text citations match the sources in your Works Cited list. For more advice from our Creative Writing reviewer, including how to cite an essay in APA or Chicago Style, keep reading. Did this summary help you? Yes No
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How to Cite a Website in MLA | Format & Examples
Published on July 17, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on June 16, 2022.
An MLA website citation includes the author’s name , the title of the page (in quotation marks), the name of the website (in italics), the publication date , and the URL (without “https://”).
If the author is unknown, start with the title of the page instead. If the publication date is unknown, or if the content is likely to change over time, add an access date at the end instead.
Websites don’t usually have page numbers, so the in-text citation is just the author name in parentheses. If you already named the author in your sentence, you don’t need to add a parenthetical citation.
Generate accurate MLA citations with Scribbr
The format differs for other types of online content, such as YouTube videos , TED Talks , and podcasts .
Table of contents
Citing online articles, citing web pages with no author or date, citing an entire website, publishers in mla website citations, frequently asked questions about mla style.
The format for citing an article from an online newspaper , magazine, or blog is the same as a general web page citation. If the article is a PDF of a print article, the format differs slightly .
Write the article title in title case (all major words capitalized). Use the most recent publication date on the page, including the day, month, and year if available.
Note, however, that a different format is used when citing online articles from academic journals.
Learn how to cite journal articles in MLA
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If no author is credited, leave out this element, and start with the title of the page or article instead.
Use a shortened version of the title in your in-text citation. The shortened title must match the first words of your Works Cited entry.
If no publication date is available, leave out this element, and include the date on which you accessed the page at the end.
Note that a specific format exists for citing online dictionary entries .
If you cite a whole website, there is usually no named author, so the Works Cited entry begins with the name of the website in italics.
If the website has a publication or copyright date (usually found in the footer), include this; if not, add the date when you accessed the website at the end of the citation.
When should you cite a whole website?
Most of the time, you should cite the specific page or article where you found the information. However, you might have to cite the entire website if you are giving a general overview of its content, referring only to the homepage, or quoting text that appears on many different pages across the site (such as a company’s slogan).
If you cite multiple pages or articles from the same website, you should include a separate Works Cited entry for each one.
If the publisher is the same as the name of the website, you leave it out of the citation to avoid repetition.
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If a source has no author, start the MLA Works Cited entry with the source title . Use a shortened version of the title in your MLA in-text citation .
If a source has no page numbers, you can use an alternative locator (e.g. a chapter number, or a timestamp for a video or audio source) to identify the relevant passage in your in-text citation. If the source has no numbered divisions, cite only the author’s name (or the title).
If you already named the author or title in your sentence, and there is no locator available, you don’t need a parenthetical citation:
- Rajaram argues that representations of migration are shaped by “cultural, political, and ideological interests.”
- The homepage of The Correspondent describes it as “a movement for radically different news.”
If a source has two authors, name both authors in your MLA in-text citation and Works Cited entry. If there are three or more authors, name only the first author, followed by et al.
Yes. MLA style uses title case, which means that all principal words (nouns, pronouns , verbs, adjectives , adverbs , and some conjunctions ) are capitalized.
This applies to titles of sources as well as the title of, and subheadings in, your paper. Use MLA capitalization style even when the original source title uses different capitalization .
The title of an article is not italicized in MLA style , but placed in quotation marks. This applies to articles from journals , newspapers , websites , or any other publication. Use italics for the title of the source where the article was published. For example:
Use the same formatting in the Works Cited entry and when referring to the article in the text itself.
The fastest and most accurate way to create MLA citations is by using Scribbr’s MLA Citation Generator .
Search by book title, page URL, or journal DOI to automatically generate flawless citations, or cite manually using the simple citation forms.
Cite this Scribbr article
If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.
McCombes, S. (2022, June 16). How to Cite a Website in MLA | Format & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved September 30, 2023, from https://www.scribbr.com/mla/website-citation/
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Home / Guides / Citation Guides / MLA Format / MLA Website Citation
How to Cite a Website in MLA
If you are a student faced with creating an MLA website citation for the first time, you may be confused about where to begin. This guide is here to answer all of your questions and take the guesswork out of creating an MLA citation for websites.
All academic fields require students and researchers to document their sources. Those studying the humanities, including fields in language literature, will typically follow MLA format when structuring their papers as well as when documenting sources.
Citing your sources is a necessary part of any research paper or project. This element serves both to give credit to the researchers and authors whose work informed yours, as well as to preserve academic integrity. Any source that provided you with ideas or information that you have included in your work and which are not considered common knowledge must be included, including websites.
The Modern Language Association is not associated with this guide. All of the information, however, is based on the MLA Handbook, Ninth Edition as well as the MLA website, and is presented as guidance for students writing in this style.
If you are looking for help with APA format , our reference library can provide you with guidance for this and more styles .
What You Need
To cite a website, you should have the following information:
- Title of source.
- Title of the container ,
- Other contributors (names and roles),
- Publication date,
- Location of the source (such as DOI, URL, or page range).
The Modern Language Association refers to these guidelines as “core elements” on page 105 of the Handbook. If your teacher has asked you to cite your sources in this format, these elements will form the foundation for each MLA website citation included in your MLA Works Cited list, as well as the entries for sources in any other format.
If one of the elements does not apply, students may omit it. Supplemental items may also be included when necessary. In addition to the supplemental details discussed below, a list of additional supplemental components can be found on the MLA website.
If it’s an APA citation website page or an APA reference page you need help with, we have many other resources available for you!
Table of Contents
This guide includes the following sections:
- MLA9 Changes
- Citing websites with an author
- Citing websites with no author
- Citing websites with no formal title
- Citing social media websites
- In-text citations
Changes to MLA Citation for Websites in Ninth Edition
In previous editions, students and researchers creating an MLA website citation were not required to include the URL. However, beginning with MLA 8, it is recommended that you include the URL when creating a citation for a website unless your teacher instructs you otherwise. Even though web pages and URLs can be taken down or changed, it is still possible to learn about the source from the information seen in the URL.
When including URLs in a citation, http:// and https:// should be omitted from the website’s address ( Handbook 195). Additionally, If you are creating a citation that will be read on a digital device, it is helpful to make the URL clickable so that readers can directly access the source themselves.
If the website’s publisher includes a permalink or DOI (Digital Object Identifier), these are preferable as they are not changeable in the same manner as URLs. Whether you include a URL, permalink, or DOI, this information should be included in the location portion of your citation.
Another change that occurred with the eighth edition that impacts how to cite a website in MLA is the removal of the date the website was accessed. While you may still find it useful to include this information or your teacher may request it, it is no longer a mandatory piece of your citation. Should you choose to add this optional information, you may list it after the URL in the following manner:
- Accessed Day Month Year.
- Accessed 2 May 1998.
- Accessed 31 Apr. 2001.
- Accessed 17 Sept. 2010.
For an overview of additional formatting changes in the ninth edition, including resources to help with writing an annotated bibliography , check out the rest of EasyBib.com’s writing and citation guides, and try out our plagiarism checker for help with grammar and to avoid unintentional plagiarism.
MLA 9: Citing Websites With an Author
To make an MLA 9 citation for a website, you will need the following pieces of information:
- author’s name
- title of the article or page
- title of the website
- name of the publisher (Note: Only include the name of the publisher when it differs from the name of the website.)
- date the page or site was published (if available)
Citing a Website in MLA
Place the author’s name in reverse order, the last name first, followed by a comma, and then the first name followed by a period. The title of the web page or article is placed in quotation marks, with a period before the end quotation. The title of the website is written in italics followed by a comma. If the name of the publisher differs from the name of the website, include it after the title. Immediately following the publisher is the date that the page or article was published or posted. Finally, end with the URL, permalink, or DOI, followed by a period.
View Screenshot | Cite your source
In-text website citation with one author
The in-text citation for a website with an author is reflected as the author’s last name in parentheses, followed by a period. Unless the website includes numbered paragraphs or sections, you should not include any additional information. For the website used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
Cite your source
An APA parenthetical citation is similar, except it also includes the year the source was published.
To learn more about formatting MLA in-text & parenthetical citations , be sure to check out the rest of EasyBib.com’s resources and citation guides.
How to cite a website with two authors in MLA 9
According to Section 5.7 of the Handbook , for a website with two authors, place the authors’ names in the same order as the source (similar to an APA citation ). The first name should be formatted in reverse order as was done for a single author. The second name, however, is written as First Name Last Name and is followed by a period, as demonstrated in the template that follows:
In-text website citation with two authors
The in-text citation for a website with two authors should include both authors’ last names, in the order in which they are listed in the source and your works cited:
How to cite a website with three or more authors in MLA 9
For a source with three or more authors, you should place the authors’ names in the same order as the source. The first name is listed in reverse order and is followed by a comma and et al. Et al is the abbreviation for et alia, a gender-neutral Latin phrase meaning “and others.”
In-text website citation with 3+ authors
The in-text citation for a website with three or more authors should contain only the first author’s last name, followed by et al. ( Handbook 232):
Click on this page if you’re looking for information on how to create an APA in-text citation .
MLA 9 Citation for Websites with No Author
Sometimes, websites do not state who wrote the information on the page. When no author is listed, you may omit the author information from the MLA citation for the website and begin, instead, with the title ( Handbook 108).
Note about web pages by organizations/corporations: Often, web pages are published by organizations or corporations with no author indicated. In these cases, you can assume that the publisher also authored the web page (like the example above). Since the author and publisher are the same in these cases, you can skip showing an author and just indicate the organization /corporation as the publisher ( Handbook 119 ).
In-text website citation with no author
The in-text citation for a website without an author is noted with the first noun phrase or words in the title in quotations and parenthesis, followed by a period. Unless the website includes numbered paragraphs or sections, you should not include any additional information. For the website used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
MLA 9 Citation for Websites Without a Formal Title
When citing a web page that does not include a formal title, it is acceptable to include a description of the page. Do not place the description in italics or quotation marks. Follow the description with the name of the website.
In-text website citation without a title
The in-text citation for a website without a formal title uses a shortened version of the webpage description for the in-text citation. Use the first noun phrase of the description from your Works Cited citation in parenthesis, followed by a period. For the website used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
MLA 9 Citation for Social Media Websites
In an increasingly digital world, social media platforms have become one of the most popular sources students turn to when writing a research paper. From Black history facts , to quotes from notable people, such as Martin Luther King and Winston Churchill , social media has become a mega influence in our world.
When citing social media in your work, follow the same format as an MLA citation for a website. Here are some examples of ways you can cite various social media platforms in your work:
How to cite Twitter in MLA 9
Many notable individuals use Twitter as a platform to share intriguing ideas. It’s a shame Twitter was unavailable to long-gone scientists, authors, and presidents such as Albert Einstein , Mark Twain , and Abraham Lincoln . Luckily, we have the Twitter profiles of today’s great minds at our fingertips!
To cite a tweet, you will begin with the account holder’s name and their Twitter handle in square brackets, followed by a period ( Handbook 118). After this, in quotations, you should enter the full text of the tweet, including any hashtags. The publisher, Twitter, is then listed in italics, followed by the date the tweet was posted in day, month, year format. Finally, include a URL to the tweet followed by a period.
Note: When the account name and username are similar, the username can be excluded from the citation. For example, if the account’s username was @FirstNameLastName or @OrganizationName.
In-text website citation of a Twitter post
The in-text citation for a Twitter post is reflected as the author’s last name in parentheses, followed by a period. For the tweet used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
How to cite Instagram in MLA 9
To cite an Instagram post, begin with the account holder’s name and their username in square brackets. In quotations, list the title of the photo, if it is given. If there is no title, write a brief description of the picture but do not place it in italics or quotation marks. The publisher, Instagram, is then listed in italics. Any other contributors (such as the photographer, if it is not the same as the account holder) are then listed, after which you will add the date the photo was published and the URL.
In-text website citation of an Instagram post
The in-text citation for an Instagram post is reflected as the author’s last name or the name of the account in parentheses, followed by a period. For the Instagram post used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
How to cite Facebook in MLA 9
To cite a Facebook post, begin with the account holder’s name or username. In quotations, list the title or caption of the post, if it is given. If there is no title or caption, write a brief description of the post, but do not place it in italics or quotation marks. Examples: Image of Malcolm X, or, Muhammed Ali headshot.
The publisher, Facebook, is then listed in italics, after which you will add the date posted and URL.
In-text website citation of a Facebook post
The in-text citation for a Facebook post is reflected as the author’s last name or the name of the account in parentheses, followed by a period. For the Facebook post used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
Social media and website comments
Citing the comments left on social media or a website begins with the commenter’s name or username. To indicate that you are citing a comment, follow the name with a period and then the words Comment on , followed by the title of the source (for example, the name of the article) in quotation marks. This is then followed by the title of the website in italics, and the publisher, if applicable. The date is then listed, followed by the URL, permalink, or DOI.
In-text citation of a social media comment
The in-text citation for a social media comment is reflected as the author’s last name in parentheses, followed by a period. For the post used in the example above, the in-text citation would be written as follows:
In-text Citations for Websites
In-text citations generally consist of parentheses and the last names of the authors or the first few words of the web page title.
Since there are no page numbers, unless the web page includes numbered paragraphs or sections, you don’t need to include any additional information.
When you have multiple authors, place them in the same order they are listed in the source.
If what you really need is an APA book citation or a reference for an APA journal , there are more guides on EasyBib.com for you to explore.
Visit our EasyBib Twitter feed to discover more citing tips, fun grammar facts, and the latest product updates.
Solution #1: when and how to reference entire websites versus specific pages in mla.
Reference an entire website when your information comes from multiple pages or if you are describing the entirety of the website. If your information is only from one page, only cite the singular page.
Whole website, author known
- Write the author’s name in last name, first name format with a period following.
- Next, write the name of the website in italics.
- Write the contributing organization’s name with a comma following.
- List the date in day, month, year format with a comma following.
- Lastly, write the URL with a period following.
Works cited example:
Night, Samuel. Food Creations , International Hypothetical Chefs’ Club, 21 May 2021, www.foodcreationshypotheticalwebsite.com/best_macaroni_recipe.
Whole website, author unknown
- If there is no specific author, begin the citation by writing the website name in italics.
Food Creations , International Hypothetical Chefs’ Club, 21 May 2021, www.foodcreationshypotheticalwebsite.com/best_macaroni_recipe.
( Food Creations )
Webpage, author known
If information is from only a few pages or the pages cover multiple topics, reference each page
- If an author is named, write the author’s name in last name, first name format.
- If a title is not provided, create your own description of the page.
- List the title of the website in italics with a comma following.
- Write the date that the page was created followed by a comma.
- Lastly, list the URL followed by a period.
Blake, Evan. “Best Southern Macaroni Recipe.” Food Creations , International Hypothetical Chefs’ Club, 21 May 2021, www.foodcreationshypotheticalwebsite.com/best_macaroni_recipe.
Webpage, author unknown
If an author is not named, write the name of the page in quotation marks with a period following.
“Best Southern Macaroni Recipe.” Food Creations , International Hypothetical Chefs’ Club, 21 May 2021, www.foodcreationshypotheticalwebsite.com/best_macaroni_recipe.
(“Best Southern Macaroni Recipe”)
Solution #2: Referencing a conversation on social media in MLA
The in-text citation should identify the author and talk about the format (e.g., video, post, image, etc.) in prose.
Lilly West’s photo of traditional Japanese sweets shows an example of nature influencing Japanese design.
The basic structure of a works-cited reference for social media stays the same no matter the format or the social media service (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.). Here are works- cited-list entry guidelines:
- The name is listed in last name, first name format with a period following. If an organization, just write the organization’s name as it’s usually presented.
- If the username is very different from the author’s real name, include it in brackets after the user’s real name but before the period.
- Write the title, post text, or description of the post in quotation marks. End it with a period.
- Write the website name in italics with a comma afterward.
- List the day, month, and year that the post was created followed by a comma.
- List the URL followed by a period. Leave out “https://” and “http://”.
West, Lily. “Kyoto Japanese sweets.” Facebook , 30 May 2021, www.facebook.com/hypotheticalexample/thispostisnotreal.
Twitter reference example:
West, Lily [@lilianhypotheticalwestbest]. “Kyoto Japanese sweets.” Twitter, 30 May 2021, www.twitter.com/hypotheticalexample/thispostisnotreal.
Instagram reference example:
West, Lily [@lilianhypotheticalwestbest]. “Kyoto Japanese sweets.” Instagram , 30 May 2021, www.instagram.com/hypotheticalexample/thisphotoisnotreal.
Solution #3: How to cite a social media post without a title or text
If there is no text or title where the title element usually goes, instead describe the post without quotation marks. Example:
West, Lily [@lilianhypotheticalwestbest]. Photo of traditional Japanese sweets on a green plate. Instagram , photographed by Bethany Lynn, 30 May 2021, www.instagram.com/hypotheticalexample/thisphotoisnotreal.
Solution #4: How to cite a social media post with a long title or text
If the text is very long, you can shorten it by adding ellipsis at the end of the text. Example:
West, Lily [@lilianhypotheticalwestbest]. “Nothing is better in life than feeling like all of the effort you’ve invested has finally. . . .” Twitter, 17 Feb. 2021, www.twitter.com/hypotheticalexample/thispostisnotreal.
- Works Cited
MLA Handbook . 9th ed., Modern Language Association of America, 2021.
Published October 31, 2011. Updated June 5, 2021.
Written and edited by Michele Kirschenbaum and Elise Barbeau. Michele Kirschenbaum is a school library media specialist and the in-house librarian at EasyBib.com. Elise Barbeau is the Citation Specialist at Chegg. She has worked in digital marketing, libraries, and publishing.
MLA Formatting Guide
- Annotated Bibliography
- Block Quotes
- et al Usage
- In-text Citations
- Page Numbers
- Sample Paper
- MLA 8 Updates
- MLA 9 Updates
- View MLA Guide
- Book Chapter
- Journal Article
- Magazine Article
- Newspaper Article
- Website (no author)
- View all MLA Examples
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Yes, there’s an option to download source citations as a Word Doc or a Google Doc. You may also copy citations from the EasyBib Citation Generator and paste them into your paper.
Creating an account is not a requirement for generating MLA citations. However, registering for an EasyBib account is free, and an account is how you can save all the citations you create. This can help make it easier to manage your citations and bibliographies.
Yes! Whether you’d like to learn how to construct citations on your own, our Autocite tool isn’t able to gather the metadata you need, or anything in between, manual citations are always an option. Click here for directions on using creating manual citations.
If any important information is missing (e.g., author’s name, title, publishing date, URL, etc.), first see if you can find it in the source yourself. If you cannot, leave the information blank and continue creating your citation.
It supports MLA, APA, Chicago, Harvard, and over 7,000 total citation styles.
If there is no author, the title becomes the website page’s identifier.
In-text example (no author): ( Honey Bee Medley )
Works cited example (no author): Honey Bee Medley . Hivemind Press, 2018, www.hivebees.com/honey-bees.
If there is no publication date, include an accessed date instead.
Works cited example (no author, no date): Honey Bee Medley . Hivemind Press, www.hivebees.com/honey-bees. Accessed 17 Nov. 2020.
If there is no title, briefly describe the source.
Works cited example (no author, no date, no title): Collage of honey bees. Hivemind Press, www.hivebees.com/honey-bees. Accessed 17 Nov. 2020.
To cite a website that has no page number in MLA, it is important that you know the name of the author, title of the webpage, website, and URL. The templates for an in-text citation and works-cited-list entry of a website that has no page number, along with examples, are given below:
In-text citation template and example:
You can use a time stamp if you are referring to an audio or video. Otherwise, use only the author’s surname.
Works-cited-list entry template and example:
Author or Organization Name. “Title of the Webpage.” Website Name . Publication Date, URL.
Dutta, Smita S. “What is Extra Sensory Perception?” Medindia . 16 Nov. 2019, www.medindia.net/patients/patientinfo/extra-sensory-perception.htm#3 .
Abbreviate the month in the date field.
MLA Citation Examples
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MLA Citation with Multiple Authors: In-Text and Works Cited List
- by Lesley V.
- September 26, 2023
How to cite the works of more than one author or editor in your essay? MLA format citation guidelines prescribe clear rules to follow.
Whatever MLA in-text citation website you visit, you’ll find examples with explanations. The MLA 8 Handbook also describes all the guidelines in detail. This page gathers all that information in one place.
In this post, I’ll show you how to cite multiple authors in MLA format, both in text and bibliography. Let’s learn what to do with the works of two and three authors and when to use “et al.”
- How to cite TED talks in MLA
- How to cite songs in MLA
How to Cite an Article With Multiple Authors – MLA
Let’s start with what to do with your works cited list.
For sources with two or three authors or editors, include all their names in the order in which they appear. Reverse only the first author’s name: Place their last name first. The following creators have their names written in a traditional way: First Name + Last Name. (1)
Separate the authors’ names by commas and ensure you spell out the word “and” before the last name. Please do not use any symbols for this conjunction. If the individuals you quote are editors, add “eds.” after the final name in the list.
Please look at the example again: The article’s title goes in italics. The same rule works for those asking how to cite a book MLA: The book’s title will be in italics in your works cited list.
Now, let’s see what to do when you have a text of more than three creators.
If a source has more than three authors or editors, mention only the first person’s name, followed by the “et al.” (It means “and others” in Latin.)
It’s also possible to list all the names in your reference sentence. It’s your choice.
When citing online magazine articles or web pages, add the URL and the date when you accessed that page:
In-Text Citation With Multiple Authors
Here’s how to cite multiple authors in text MLA:
Include all authors’ last names each time you reference a source, along with a page number. No commas are necessary after the names or “et al.”
How you cite sources in your essay depends on how you choose to cite them in your bibliography. If you used “et al.” in your works cited list, you’ll use “et al.” in-text. If you include all the authors’ names to format the works cited list, then list all authors’ last names in-text.
MLA citation of several authors is parenthetical citation (2):
When citing one creator, we mention their last name and page number in parentheses. For works of two writers, do the same but include both last names connected by “and” and followed by the page number. Please note there’s no comma before the page number:
- (Johnson and Smith 77)
For citations of three or more writers, include the first author’s last name followed by “et al.” and the page number. No commas here, too:
- (Johnson et al. 25)
Two ways you can place in-text citations of several creators in your sentence:
- According to Johnson et al., “Current agricultural policies contribute to the poor health of Americans.” (25)
- The authors claim that government-funded farm subsidies are among the causes of obesity in the USA. (Johnson et al. 25)
MLA Format With Multiple Authors
MLA citation of multiple authors is not that challenging to master:
- Use parentheses and avoid commas when citing in-text.
- Reverse the first writer’s name and add “et al.” when citing in bibliographies. Remember to italicize the work’s title.
Feel free to use all the examples from this post as references when citing many authors in MLA format. Questions left? I’m all ears in the comments!
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How to cite in an essay: what MLA and APA are
Citing an essay: getting acquainted with MLA and APA
It doesn’t matter if you are just a high school student or you are already a professional writer: you should be able to cite the sources you use with a specific style of formatting. Two most popular and commonly used in citing styles are MLA and APA . They make sure there is no plagiarism in the text and provide the readers with the link where they can find more info about the paper.
As citations are very important part of your essay, you should directly follow the instructions. So let’s consider the requirements for each of the given styles.
MLA basic rules
- Write the last name of the author followed by a comma and the first name followed by a period. Then put the essay name in quotations (the period must be inside the last one) and make the first letters of words capital.
- Write the title in italics (if you hand write, then just underline it). Before you write the name of the editor, use “Ed.”.
- Location of the book should be written followed by a colon and then – name of the publisher.
You can use the following example to understand what we mean: Harris, Muriel. “Talk to Me: Engaging Reluctant Writers.” A Tutor’s Guide: Helping Writers One to One. Ed. Ben Rafoth. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2000. 24-34. Print.
APA basic rules
APA is the abbreviation from the American Psychological Association, and this formatting style is actively used in business, social sciences and nursing. How to cite an article in an essay according to APA style?
- Write the last name of the author followed by a comma and the first name followed by a period.
- Write the essay title ending it with a period. You should capitalize only the first letter in the first word and not all of them like in MLA.
- Write it in italics or underline and then end it with a period.
You can use the following example to understand what we mean: Bjork, R. A. (1989). Retrieval inhibition as an adaptive mechanism in human memory. In H. L. Roediger III, & F. I. M. Craik (Eds.), Varieties of memory & consciousness (pp. 309-330). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
How to cite a website in an essay
MLA formatting style does not require adding the URL, However, they require you to include the publisher of the website or its sponsor (and usually it is a corporation, not an individual).
For instance: Last, First M. “Article Title.”Website Title. Website Publisher, Date Month Year Published. Web. Date Month Year Accessed.
In APA you should just cite a general website article with the author.
By the way, to make sure your citation is made in the proper way – use online citation generator tools, which are able help with the formatting style
How to cite a quote in an essay
According to MLA, you when citing a quote you should omit quotation marks, start it with the new line, use double spacing and include the citation after the punctuation ends. And in APA you should just include the last name of the author, the year and also the page number.
That is it 🙂
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