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MLA Citation Guide


Why cite?

The purpose of citing sources is to give credit to the author for any ideas or quotations that you use and to enable your reader to locate the sources.

How to cite?

The best time to document sources is when you are actually using them. It can be very difficult to go back at a later date to relocate your sources.

Step 1 Decide what type of resource you are using - a book? A website? A magazine? An interview?

Step 2 Find the example in this brochure, or if it is not listed, look it up in one of the sources listed below.

Step 3 Write your citation, following the appropriate examples. Use the proper punctuation. Your source might not have all the parts listed in the guidelines and examples.

Suggested Resources

Common types of sources are listed in this brochure. For explanations and examples of other types of sources, please ask your instructor, or refer to the following book: MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (7th ed.) available in the library. Citation guides can also be found on the web via the Purdue Online Writing Lab.


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General Rules


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Print Resources

Book by a single author

Author's name (last name, first name). Title of book. Edition (if appropriate). Place of
       publication: Publisher, year. Print.

Knott, Jeff. Navigating the Healthcare Maze: What You Need to Know. Sanford, FL: DC Press, 2009. Print.

Maslow, Abraham. Motivation and Personality. 3rd ed. New York: Addison, 1987. Print.

Book by two or three authors

First author's name (last name, first name), and additional author's name(s) (first name last
       name). Title of book. Edition (if appropriate). Place of publication: Publisher, year. Print.

Baker, Amy J.L., and Benjamin J. Charvat. Research Methods in Child Welfare. New York: Columbia UP,
      2008. Print.

Book by four or more authors

First author's name (last name, first name, followed by "et al.") Title of book. Edition (if
       appropriate). Place of publication: Publisher, year. Print.

Choset, Howie, et al. Principles of Robot Motion. Cambridge, MA: MIT P, 2005. Print.

Book by a corporate author

Corporate author. Title of book. Place of publication: Publisher, year. Print.

World Health Organization. WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2008: the MPOWER Package.
      Geneva: World Health Organization, 2008. Print.

Books with editors

Editor’s name (last name, first name), additional editor's name(s) (if any) (first name last name),
       ed(s). Title of book. Place of publication: Publisher, year. Print.

Snyder, Carrie L., ed. Euthanasia. Detroit: Greenhaven, 2006. Print.

Government publications

If no author is listed, treat the government agency as the author. Give name of the
       government first,followed by the name of the agency. Title of publication. Place
       of publication: Publisher, year. Print.

Olmsted County Public Health Services. 2008 Olmsted County Community Health Needs Assessment.
       Rochester, MN: Olmsted County Public Health Services, 2008. Print.

Work in an anthology

Author of selection (last name, first name). "Title of selection." If a reprint from another
       source, add that info here. Title of anthology.
Editor(s) of the anthology (if any) (first
       name last name). Place of publication: Publisher, year. Page number(s) of selection. Print.

Vorse, Mary Heaton. "The War in Passaic." Journalistas: 100 Years of the Best Writing and Reporting by
       Women Journalists
. Ed. Eleanor Mills with Kira Cochrane. New York: Carroll, 2005. 106-09. Print.

Tomc, Sandra. "An Idle Industry: Nathaniel Parker Willis and the Workings of Literary Leisure." American
       Quarterly
49.4 (1997): 780-805. Rpt. In Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism. Ed. Kathy D.
       Darrow and Russel Whitaker. Vol. 194. Detroit: Gale, 2008. 313-26. Print.

Encyclopedia or dictionary

Author of the entry (if any) (last name, first name). "Entry heading." Title of the encyclopedia
       or dictionary
. Edition number (if any). Year. (If the book is not well known, provide editors,
       place of publication, and publisher.) Print.

Pasternak, Gavril W. "Codeine." Encyclopedia of Drugs, Alcohol & Addictive Behavior. Ed. Henry R. Kranzler
       and Pamela Korsmeyer. 3rd ed. Vol. 1. Detroit: MacMillan-Gale, 2009. Print.

"Flash." Def. 4. The New Partridge Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English. Ed. Tom Dalzell and
       Terry Victor. Vol. 1. London: Routledge, 2006. Print.

"Clinton, William Jefferson." Who's Who in America. 55th ed. 2001. Print.

Multivolume work

Author or editor (last name, first name), followed by "ed." (If appropriate). Title of work.
       Number of volumes. (If only one volume is being cited, state the number of the volume
       and give publication information for that volume alone.) Place of publication: Publisher,
       year(s). Print.

French, Marilyn. From Eve to Dawn: a History of Women. 4 vols. New York: Feminist, 2008. Print.

Article in a magazine

Author (last name, first name). "Title of article." Title of magazine day month year: page
       numbers. Print.

Lithwick, Dahlia. "Sotomayor in 60 Seconds: a Guide to the Confirmation Hearings." Newsweek 20 July 2009:
       24. Print.

Article in a scholarly journal

Author (last name, first name). "Title of article." Title of journal volume number. issue
       number (year): page number(s). Print.

Schram, Sanford F. et al. "Deciding to Discipline: Race, Choice, and Punishment at the Frontlines of Welfare
       Reform." American Sociological Review 74.3 (2009): 398-422. Print.

Article in a daily newspaper

Author (if available). "Title of article." Title of newspaper without introductory articles [City
       – if this is a local newspaper without the city name in its title] day month year, edition (if
       on masthead): page number(s). Print.

Bowley, Graham and Jenny Anderson. "For Goldman, a Swift Return to Big Profits." New York Times 13 July
       2009, natl. ed.: A1+. Print.

Editorial in a newspaper

"Title of article." Editorial. Title of newspaper [City, if this is a local newspaper without the city
       name in its title] day month year, edition (if on masthead): page number(s). Print.

"Carefully Consider Housing Data." Editorial. Star Tribune [Minneapolis, St. Paul] 15 July 2009: A12. Print.

Review of a film

Reviewer's name (last name, first name). "Title of Review (if available)." Rev. of Title of film
       reviewed
, dir. (first name last name). Title of newspaper or magazine day month year: page
       number(s). Print.

Jacobson, A. Rev. of Made in L.A., dir. Almudena Cabracedo. Video Librarian Sept./Oct. 2008: 52. Print.


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Web Resources

Online article databases

(Cite as you would a printed source, followed by) Title of database. Web. Date of access.

Tolson, Nancy."Making Books Available: The Role of Early Libraries, Librarians and Booksellers in the
       Promotion of African American Children's Literature". African American Review 32.1 (1998): 9-16.
       Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Sept. 2008.

Web site

Name of the author (last name, first name). "Title of the page (if part of a larger Web site)."
       Title of the overall Web site. Publisher or sponsor (or N.p.), Date of publication (if none,
       use n.d.). Web. Date of access. < URL (only if necessary) >.

"State of the Birds." Audubon. National Audubon Society, 2009. Web. 4 Aug. 2009.

Daly, Lew. "The Case for Paid Family Leave." Newsweek. Newsweek, 3 Aug. 2009. Web. 4 Aug. 2009.

Doe, John. John Doe's Home Page. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 May 2009. <www-csstudents.stanford.edu/~mctam/>.

eBook - electronic book

Shalot, Andrew. How to do Everything With Online Video. New York: McGraw, 2008. NetLibrary.
       Web. 29 Mar.2009.


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Other Resources

Personal interview - conducted by researcher

Name of person interviewed (last name, first name). Type of interview. Date of interview (day
       month year).

Barker, Jasper. Personal interview. 7 Jan. 2000.

Black, Brianna. E-mail interview. 5-7 July 2004.

Film or video recording

Title of the film or video. Dir. Name of the director. Distributor, year of release. Medium. Other
       pertinent data (writer, performers, producer, original release date), if relevant, may be
       included after the name of the director.

The Mummy. Dir. Stephen Sommers. Perf. Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, and John Hannah. Universal,
       1999.Videocassette.

500 Nations. Dir. Jack Leustig. Warner Home Video, 2004. DVD.

Sound recording

Composer, Conductor, or Performer (depending on the desired emphasis). "Title of song." (if
       applicable).Title of Recording. Performer or conductor if necessary. Manufacture, Year of
       issue (if year is unknown, write n.d.). Medium.

Clash. "Brand New Cadillac". London Calling. Sony, 1999. CD.

King, Carole. Tapestry. Rec. 1971. Ode Records, 1999. CD.

Television or radio program

"Title of the episode or segment." Title of the program or series. Name of the network (if any).
       Station call letters, city location. Broadcast day month year. Medium. Other pertinent data
       (narrator, director, peformers), if relevant, may be included after the title of the program.

"Chicken, Shrimp, and Sausage Stew." Hot Off the Grill with Bobby Flay. Food Network. 7 Jan. 2000.
       Television.

"Warm Mix Asphalt." Narr. Sandra Larson. Living on Earth. Public Radio Intl. WGBH, Boston. 26 Sept. 2008.
       Radio.


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A print copy of this information in brochure format is available in the library.

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Last updated: March 12, 2014