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This guide is a general overview of the Modern Language Association (MLA) Style for references and citations. Be sure to consult the MLA Handbook or the MLA Website for detailed standards and procedures.
The information provided below will assist you in properly formatting your paper according to the MLA standards. Please check with your professor to ensure that you are meeting all requirements for your specific class and project.
Please visit the MLA website to learn more about formatting your MLA style paper.
When you reference someone else's words or thoughts, use an in-text citation in the body of your paper. Watch the video below to learn more.
(Author's Last Name Page#).
How do I format my citations?
The information provided below will assist you in properly formatting your in-text citations according to MLA standards.
If you're quoting the exact words of someone else, make certain to include quotation marks around those words. You must also cite information that you have placed into your own words, a paraphrase.
According to Brown, "Direct quote" (1021).
Brown found that paraphrased passage (1021).
[Some other introduction] "Direct quote" (Brown 1021).
If you're directly quoting a passage that is longer than 4 lines, use a blockquote. Block quotes don't need quotation marks. Instead, indent the text 1/2" as a visual cue that you are citing. The in-text citation in parentheses goes after the punctuation of the quote.
Shavers' study found the following:
While research studies have established that socioeconomic status influences disease incidence, severity and access to healthcare, there has been relatively less study of the specific manner in which low SES influences receipt of quality care and consequent morbidity and mortality among patients with similar disease characteristics, particularly among those who have gained access to the healthcare system. (1021)
Tip: Use direct quotes sparingly! Focus on summarizing the findings from multiple research studies. In the sciences and social sciences, only use the exact phrasing or argument of an individual when necessary.
If your source has paragraph numbers, section numbers, or chapter numbers, utilize these numbers in the absence of normal page numbers. Use the appropriate abbreviation to identify the type of number identification you are using. Add the letter s to the abbreviation when listing multiple paragraphs, sections, or chapters.
Paragraph: par. or pars.
Section: sec. or secs.
Chapter: ch. or chs.
If your source has no page numbers listed and does not have any paragraph, section, or chapter numbers listed, omit the page number from the citation.
Works Cited Template
A list of core elements: click to see an explanation of each component of the Works Cited Entry.
Containers can be thought of as holders of information. Where did you access the information being cited?
For works that are parts of a greater whole, such as a chapter in a book or an article in a journal, the greater whole is considered the container.
Also, there are instances when you will have a second container, such as a chapter in a book that was accessed online through the HathiTrust Digital Libraryor an article in a journal that was accessed through the library's JSTOR database.
In these instances, the second container must also be listed in your citation. The second container's information will be listed at the very end of your citation.
In addition to the author, list the names of other people who contributed to the creation of your work and whose work played an important part in your research or whose participation in important to identifying the work.
Here are some examples of contributors that you may need to mention. Provide the description of the contributor's role followed by the contributor's name or names.
Some contributors roles are better described by simply stated the name of the role, such as general editor. You may also list more than one contributing role if it is important to your research and the identification of the work.