This YouTube video playlist contains videos to help you understand every aspect of MLA Citation Style.
Note each element ends in a comma or a period:
Most sources are part of a larger work. In MLA these larger works are called “containers.”
A few types of works are self-contained, and so are not part of a larger work, but are themselves a large work. Examples:
Use core elements 3 through 9 to give details about the container. Repeat these same elements (3 through 9) for works that have 2 containers. Example:
Kalish, Mildred Armstrong.
Kauffman, James M., and Harold J. Burbach.
Wolfteich, Claire E., et al.
Smith, John, and Margaret Jolly, editors.
Modern Language Association.
United States, National Institutes of Health.
Example of a shorter work: (The period goes before the closing quotation mark)
“A Perfect Day for Bananafish.”
Example of a longer work: (The text is in italics and ends with a period)
ScreenAgers: Lessons in Chaos from Digital Kids.
Photograph of sunset at Rocky Mountain National Park.
Journal of Education,
Webster’s New World College Dictionary,
Translated by Jay Rubin,
performances by James Stewart and Donna Reed,
vol. 42, no. 5,
season 2, episode 10,
U of Chicago P,
University of Iowa Museum of Art,
27 Aug. 1971,
The Art Institute of Chicago.
Accessed 7 June 2016.
Title of Book. Shortened Publisher Name, Year.
Lampe, Gregory P. Frederick Douglass: Freedom’s Voice. Brown, 2015.
Andrews, Kevin, and Michelle Curtis. A Changing Australia: The Social, Cultural and Economic Trends. Crown, 2014.
Brown, Frank, et al. On the Edge of the World. Harcourt, 2013.
Lerner, Gerda. The Grimke Sisters from South Carolina. 2nd ed., Little, 2013.
Smith, John, and Margaret Jolly, editors. Colonial Experience. Macmillan, 2017.
Author(s) of Chapter. “Chapter Title.” Title of Book, Edited by followed by the editor’s name. Shortened Publisher Name, Copyright Year. Pages of Chapter.
Deeb, Robert, and Charles D. Brower. “Law and Justice.” American Decades: 1950-1959, Edited by Richard Layman. Gale, 1995. pp. 225-256.
Reid, Donald J. “Alfalfa.” World Book Encyclopedia, vol. 1, World Book, 2015. pp. 345-348.
“Literally.” Webster’s New World College Dictionary, 5 th ed., Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016, p.726.
Forbes, Scott. A Natural History of Families. Princeton UP, 2007. Project Muse, muse.jhu.edu/book/31159.
Bull, Alvin F. and Sylvan T. Runkel. Wildflowers of Iowa Woodlands. 2nd ed., University of Iowa P, 2009. EBSCOhost eBook Collection, resources.kirkwood.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=325293&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
* Page numbers refer to the print MLA Handbook, available at Kirkwood libraries.
Author(s). "Title of Article." Title of Periodical, Day Month Year, pages.
Drucker, Peter. “Beyond the Information Revolution.” Atlantic Monthly, 31 Jan. 2015, pp. 47-48.
Author(s). "Title of Article." Title of Journal, vol. Volume number, no. Issue number, Month Year, pp. Page numbers.
Kauffman, James M., and Harold J. Burbach. “Creating Classroom Civility.” Journal of Education, vol. 181, no. 3, Feb. 2013, pp. 12-18.
Author(s). “Title of Article.” Title of Journal, vol. Volume number, no. Issue number, Month Year, pp. page number(s). Database Provider Name, www.urlwhereyoufoundarticleorpermalink.edu.
Example without doi:
Smith, Gary. “Onward to the Top.” Successful Business, vol. 24, no. 7, 2019, pp. 204-210. EBSCOhost, resources.kirkwood.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&d b=bsh&AN=5265312&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
Example with doi:
Chan, Evans. “Postmodernism and Hong Kong Cinema.” Postmodern Culture, vol. 10, no. 3, Mar. 2017. JSTOR, doi:10.1353/pmc.2000.0021.
Butrymowicz, Sarah. "Charter Schools Have Had Mixed Results." Charter Schools. Edited by Margaret Haerens and Lynn Zott. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012. "Charter Schools: An Experiment with Mixed Results." Politics Daily. 2011. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. resources.kirkwood.edu/login?url=http://link.galegroup.com/ apps/doc/EJ3010800207/OVIC?u=kcccedar&xid=4c792463. Accessed 16 Aug. 2019.
Price, Hugh B. “ S.A.T. Scores.” The New York Times, 26 Apr. 2017, late ed., pp. A23+.
“Security in Airports.” The Gazette [Cedar Rapids], 5 May 2013, p. A1.
Flitter, Emily. "This Is What Racism Sounds Like in the Banking Industry." The New York Times, 11 Dec. 2019, www.nytimes.com/2019/12/11/business/jpmorgan-banking-racism.html. Accessed 19 Dec. 2019.
* Page numbers refer to the print MLA Handbook, available at Kirkwood libraries.
Author. "Title of Page or Article." Title of Website, Publisher of website, Date published, URL. Accessed day month year. [Access date is optional, but recommended especially for pages where the content might change.]
Lohr, Kathy. “Controversy Swirls around Harsh Anti-Obesity Ads.” All Things Considered, NPR, 9 Jan. 2012, www.npr.org/2012/01/09/144799538/ controversy-swirls-around-harsh-anti-obesity-ads.
Lambert, Verity. “Time and Relative Dimensions in Space.” Gallifrayan Compendium, 4 July 2017, www.tombakerltd.edu/timevehicle. Accessed 9 Oct. 2019.
“Don’t Just Manage Your Money, Own It!” Feed the Pig, American Institute of CPA, www.feedthepig.org/manage-yourmoney#.WMLUKvKs6Rg. Accessed 10 Aug. 2019.
“Gout and Diabetes.” WebMD, 10 Nov. 2017, https://www.webmd.com/arthritis/gout-diabetes-connection#1. Accessed 25 Nov. 2017.
United States, Census Bureau. Statistical Abstract of the United States, 2012, www.census.gov/library/publications/2011/compendia/statab/131ed.html. Accessed 1 Dec. 2019.
United States, Congress. Public Law 111-122. United States Statutes at Large, vol. 123, 2009, pp. 3480-82. U.S. Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/STATUTE-123/pdf/STATUTE-123.pdf. Accessed 6 May 2019.
Last name, First name, role. Title of Film. Distributor of film. Date released.
Garland, Judy, performer. The Wizard of Oz. Loew's, 1939.
Last name, First name, role. "Title of Episode." Title of Series, season number, episode number, Distributor, date released.
Whedon, Joss, creator. "Hush." Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 4, episode 10, Twentieth Century Fox, 14 Dec. 1999.
Title of Film. Directed by First name Last name, performances by First name Last name, Distributor, date released.
It's a Wonderful Life. Directed by Frank Capra, RKO, 1946.
Philadelphia Story. Directed by George Cukor, performances by Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, and James Stewart, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1940.
Director Last Name, First Name, director. “Title of Video/Segment.” Title of Website/Program. Publisher of Website, Date of Release, URL. Accessed Date Accessed.
Khan Academy. “Converting Fractions to Decimals.” YouTube, 8 Apr. 2007, youtu.be/Gn2pdkvdbGQ. Accessed 1 Nov. 2016.
Lohr, Kathy, director. “Controversy Swirls Around Harsh Anti-Obesity Ad.” All Things Considered. NPR, 9 Jan. 2018, www.npr.org/2012/01/09/144799538/controversy-swirls-around-harsh-anti-obesity-ads. Accessed 10 Jan. 2019.
McGonigal, Jane. “Gaming and Productivity.” YouTube, uploaded by Big Think, 3 July 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkdzy9bWW3E. Accessed 15 Aug. 2019.
Talreja, Sanjay and Sut Jhally. Advertising and the End of the World. Media Education Foundation, 1997, Kanopy, kirkwood.kanopystreaming.com/video/advertising-end-world. Accessed 15 July 2019.
Name(s) of creator, host, or narrator. "Title of Episode." Title of Podcast, season and episode number if available, publisher, date published, URL.
Clark, Josh, and Chuck Bryant, hosts. "How Bail Works." Stuff You Should Know, iHeartMedia, 23 Feb. 2010, www.iheart.com/podcast/105-stuff-you-should-know-26940277/episode/how-bail-works-29468033/.
Name(s) of creator, host, or narrator. "Title of Episode." Title of Podcast, season and episode number if available, publisher, date published. Title of Website, URL.
Douthat, Ross, et al., hosts. "The Pandemic vs. The President." The Argument, The New York Times, 12 Mar. 2020. The New York TImes, www.nytimes.com/2020/03/12/opinion/the-argument-coronavirus-trump.html.
Name(s) of creator, host, narrator, or interviewee. "Title of Episode." Title of Podcast, Name of app, season and episode number if available, publisher if available, date published.
Roose, Kevin, narrator. "One: Wonderland." Rabbit Hole, iHeartRadio app, 16 Apr. 2020.
If your instructor uploads content (like an article or book chapter) to Talon, and you need to cite that content in your own work, use these guidelines to help:
Anderson, W.T. "As a Farm Woman Thinks." Talon, uploaded by Bessie Wilder, 21 Dec. 2017, www.kirkwood.edu/talon.
Economic definitions. Talon, uploaded by Adam Smith, 6 Jan. 2019, www.kirkwood.edu/talon.
In much of the literary criticism the library provides, articles have been previously published in other publications.
Smith, Annie. Environmental Protection. Mentor, 1990. pp. 34-36. Contemporary Literary Criticism, general editor, Thomas Votteler, vol. 20. Gale, 1999. pp. 23-36.
Wilson, Edmund. “The Ambiguity of Henry James.” The Hound and Horn, vol. 7, no. 3, 1934, pp. 385-406. Short Story Criticism, general editor, Thomas Votteler, vol. 8, Gale, 1991. pp. 274-276.
Grossman, Edward. “Vonnegut & His Audience.” Commentary, May 1974, pp. 40-46. Edited by Carolyn Riley and Phyllis Carmen Mendelson. Contemporary Literature. Criticism. vol. 5. Gale Research, 1976. Literature Resource Center. /link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/H1100000832/LitRC?u=kirkwood_main&sid=LitRC&xid=3b48fa10. Accessed 9 Dec. 2019.
Last name, First name of artist. Title of Work. Date of composition, Location of original work. Title of Book, edited by Editor's First and Last name, Publisher name, Date of book publication, p. Page number of reproduction.
Eakins, Thomas. Spinning. 1881, private collection. Thomas Eakins. Edited by Darrel Sewell, Yale UP, 2016, p. 102.
Picasso, Pablo. Violin with Sheet of Music. 1912, Réunion des Musées Nationaux. Pablo Picasso, edited by Jesse McDonald, Barnes & Noble, 1993, p. 47.
Important note on Google Images:
Last name, First name of artist. Title of Work. Date of composition, Museum/Location of original artwork [skip location and city if same as name of website], City of location. Title of website, Publisher of website, URL.
Da Vinci, Leonardo. Mona Lisa. 1503-19. Louvre, Musée du Louvre, www.louvre.fr/en/oeuvrenotices/mona-lisa-portrait-lisa-gherardini-wife-francesco-del-giocondo.
Wood, Grant. American Gothic. 1930. Art Institute of Chicago. www.artic.edu/aic/collections/artwork/6565. Accessed 23 Sept. 2019.
Last name, First name of photographer. Title of photograph. Date photograph was taken or if not available date uploaded. Title of website, Publisher of website, URL.
Hartmann, Trish. Southern Leopard Frog. 26 June 2013. Flickr, flic.kr/p/eW8jiS.
Brief description of the photograph. Date of photograph, [Or estimate the date in brackets if unknown], personal photograph.
Dorothy Thompson with the Waucoma High School basketball team. [Circa 1933], personal photograph.
Last name, First name of artist. Title of work. Date of composition, Name of museum, city of museum.
Picasso, Pablo. Violin and Sheet of Music. 1912, Musée National Picasso, Paris.
Wood, Grant. American Gothic. 1930, Art Institute of Chicago.
Anatsui, El. Transit. 2002, wood and pigment, University of Iowa Museum of Art, Iowa City.
Last name, First name of author. "Title of Paper." Date of paper. Course for which paper was written, the college name, student paper.
Smith, Sam. "The Meaning of Life." 21 Oct. 2019. Introduction to Philosophy, Kirkwood Community College, student paper.
Name of person who was interviewed. Interview. Conducted by Your Name, Date of interview.
Reynolds, Serenity. Interview. Conducted by Jayne Cobb, 24 June 2019.
Gellar, Ross. E-mail interview. Conducted by Rachel Green, 6 June 2019.
Name of writer. "Subject line." Received by Recipient's name. Date received.
Blythe, Gilbert. "Windy Poplars." Received by Anne Shirley. 15 July 2019.
The in-text citation is a way to quickly acknowledge where you got the idea or quote you used in your writing. It also points your reader to the complete citation for that source in your Works Cited list, because the in-text citation starts with the first word(s) of your Works Cited citation.
Use an in-text citation when you summarize, paraphrase, or directly quote a source. If it isn't your original idea, cite it.
At the end of a quotation: closing quotation mark, then parentheses, then period.
"...in treatment" (Wall 809).
At the end of a sentence: parentheses, then period.
Others found many changes (Andrews and Curtis 65).
At the end of a block quote: place ending punctuation first, then the parentheses.
...In both countries it was clearer than crystal to the lords of the State preserves of loaves and fishes, that things in general were settled for ever. (Dickens 1)
Only use page numbers if they are given in the source. You do not need to count paragraphs or pages, just leave the page number out. See below for more details on numbered paragraphs and sections.
...they are careful to use words that make it clear they aren't trying to control someone's behavior (Deci and Flaste 106-8).
Deci and Flaste demonstrate that they are careful to use words that make it clear they aren't trying to control someone's behavior (106-8).
Brown based his book Play on research done by experts in many different fields of biology (6).
The study of play in humans has lately been informed by research in many different fields of biology (Brown 36).
Bede and Xing found that the most commonly prescribed treatment was often ineffective (10).
Some experts disagree, claiming that global warming is nothing new (King and Nguyen 22-23).
...these symptoms don't appear until age 14 on average (South et al. 7).
...United States Environmental Protection Agency found that river water quality is profoundly improved with the addition fo wetlands in surrounding areas (42).
Another study found that water quality was improved by nearly 38% (United States, Environmental Protection Agency 51).
...arrived, about 100 million years after the first reptiles" (Brown, "Through the Lens" 8).
In "Through the Lens of Play" Brown cites evidence that play has been around since "the earliest warm-blooded creatures" roamed the earth (8).
(Baron 194; Jacobs 55)
...United Stated Environmental Protection Agency found that water quality is profoundly improved with the addition of wetlands in the landscape (par. 8).
...findings were inconclusive (Thomas, sec. 3).
Mary Jones admitted that she had lied "to protect the honor of her father" (qtd. in Hammond 201).
These directions are for how to format your document in Word or other word processing programs in MLA style. For directions on how to format your Works Cited page, see farther down this page.
From MLA Style Center, Formatting a Research Paper