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Always consult your syllabus and assignment sheets. They may differ from information you see here (or anywhere else) on citing your sources and formatting your paper!

Citation MLA Style

MLA Style, as published in the MLA Handbook (print) and MLA Style Center (online), is developed and maintained by the Modern Language Association (MLA), the main professional organization in the United States for scholars of language and literature. MLA is most commonly used in the humanities, primarily language and literature studies, cultural studies, media studies, and related disciplines.

Librarians
Stop at the Reference Desk for help and to see the MLA style manual

MLA Style Center
Find a Quick Guide to creating a Works Cited List, highlights of the changes in the new edition of the MLA manual, and an Ask MLA section

Writing Center

Visit Saint Mary's Writing Center online or in person for more help

ZoteroBib
Get a formatted MLA citation for any resource (don't forget to proofread before using)

What is MLA?

MLA Style, as published in the MLA Handbook (print) and MLA Style Center (online), is developed and maintained by the Modern Language Association (MLA), the main professional organization in the United States for scholars of language and literature. MLA is most commonly used in the humanities, primarily language and literature studies, cultural studies, media studies, and related disciplines.

MLA Examples

Template: AuthorLastName, FirstName. Book Title. Publisher, Year.


One author: Morrison, Toni. Beloved. Knopf, 1987.

Multiple authors: Mann, Jill, and Piero Boitani. The Cambridge Chaucer Companion. Cambridge University Press, 1986.

Chapter in an edited book: Mayfield, Julian. "James Baldwin: Voice of a Revolution." Critical Essays on James Baldwin, edited by Fred L. Stanley and Nancy V. Burt, G.K. Hall, 1988, 188-201.

Template: AuthorLastName, FirstName. "Article Title." Journal Title, vol. #, no. #, date, pages. [doi/url if available]


Journal article (with DOI): Bisschoff, Lizelle. "African Cyborgs: Females and Feminists in African Science Fiction Film." Interventions: The International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, vol. 22, no. 5, 2020, pp. 608-623. EBSCO MegaFILE, doi:10.1080/1369801X.2019.1659155.

Journal article (no DOI): Williams, Linda. "Film Bodies: Gender, Genre, and Excess." Film Quarterly, vol. 44, no. 4, 1991, pp. 2-13.

Template: AuthorLastName, FirstName. "Article Title." Website Publisher, Date, URL.


Article on a website: Wabuke, Hope. "'Caste' Argues its Most Violent Manifestation is in Treatment of Black Americans." NPR, August 10, 2020, https://www.npr.org/2020/08/10/900274938/caste-argues-its-most-violent-manifestation-is-in-treatment-of-black-americans.

Streaming Video: Yuan, Eric. "How to Connect While Apart." TED, July 2020, https://www.ted.com/talks/eric_yuan_how_to_connect_while_apart/up-next.

Citing Sources - In Text

In MLA Style, you put in-text citations in the body of your paper to briefly document the source of your information and point the reader to a more complete citation in your Works Cited list at the end of your paper.

For sources with one author or editor, list the author's last name followed by the page number.

Example: (Piketty 250)

For sources with two authors or editors, list both author's last names, separated by the word and, followed by the page number.

Example: (Marx and Engels 9)

For sources with three or more authors or editors, list the first author's last name followed by et al. and the page number.

Example: (Lewis et al. 27)

For sources with no known author, use the first one to three words from the title. Don't include articles (A, An, The, etc). Provide enough words to make it clear which work you're referring to from your works cited list. If the title is in italics in your Works Cited list, litalicize the words in the in-text citation. If the title is in quotation marks in the Works Cited list, put quotation marks around the words in the in-text citation.

Example: (Cell Biology 35)

Example: ("Nursing" 50)

For sources without page numbers, cite the author name only. If there is no author, use the first one to three words from the title.

Citing Sources - Works Cited

list of the core elements of a MLA citation. Author, Title of source, Title of container, Other contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Publication Date, Location.Core Elements: According to MLA, "each entry in the list of works cited is composed of facts common to most works - the MLA core elements. They are assembled in a specific order."

Containers: "When the source being documented forms part of the larger whole, the larger whole can be thought of as a container that holds the source. For example, a short story may be contained in an anthology. The short story is the source, and the anthology is the container." A journal article published in a journal, the article is the source, and the journal is the container.

"Works Cited: A Quick Guide." The MLA Style Center, Modern Language Association of America, 2020, https://style.mla.org/works-cited-a-quick-guide/.