Modern Language Association
MLA (Modern Language Association) format is mostly used in humanities courses. It’s in-text and work cited page is focused on the authorship of the work. The formatting style is currently in its eight edition. For further resources, please see:

MLA Handbook
CALL NUMBER 808.027 M685W 2016 — On Reserve and at Reference Desk

The Little Seagull Handbook
CALL NUMBER: 808.042 B9381L 2017 — On Reserve, at Reference Desk, and on 2nd Floor Circulating Shelves

Rules for Writers
CALL NUMBER: 808.02 H118RW — At Reference Desk and on 2nd Floor Circulating Shelves
Purdue Owl
In addition to providing citation information for MLA, APA, and Chicago/Turabian formats, this resource covers grammar and the basics of writing a research paper.
MLA 8 Style Guide
MLA 8 style updates for the Little Seagull textbook published by W.W. Norton [external pdf]
The examples from this subject guide can be attributed to Purdue Owl:
The Purdue OWL Family of Sites. The Writing Lab and OWL at Purdue and Purdue U, 2008, owl.english.purdue.edu/owl. Accessed 5 December 2018.
A picture of the side of various citation books - The Chicago Manual of Style, MLA handbook, The CSE Manual, etc.

In-text Citations
  • MLA uses parenthetical citations. Use the last name of the author or authors and then cite the page number (if applicable) where the information or quote can be found. Do not put a common in between the author and the page number. For example:
    • “Contempt for the rule of law is deeply rooted in U.S. practice” (Chomsky 17).
  • When you already include the name of the author within the sentence, just include the page number in the end citation. For example:
    • Chomsky theorized that “contempt for the rule of law is deeply rooted in U.S. practice” (17).
  • All in-text citations must refer to an entry in the works cited list.
  • If there are two authors for the source, include both authors’ last names linked with “and”. If there are three or more, use the first author’s name followed by “et al.”
  • If there are two authors with the same last name on the Works Cited page, include the initial of their first name.
    • For Example: (A. Smith 11) and
  • If there is no known author for a source, include the title of the work in parenthesis. If the title is long, you can shorten it, preferably to 4-5 words maximum.
    • For example: The source is is from an article titled “The Impact of Global Warming in North America” so in the in-text citation we would use (“Impact of Global Warming”)
  • If you’re using two different sources written by the same author, include the title of the source in addition to the author’s last name and the page number.
    • For example: (Elkins, “Visual Studies” 63)
  • If the work is in an anthology of collection,cite the author of the work rather than the author of the entire collection.
  • If you’re using an electronic source, you only cite the author’s last name.
Works Cited
  • Works cited appear on a separate page at the end of the paper. Citations there should be listed alphabetically by the author’s last name
  • If there is more than one author, list the authors in the order that they appear on the material cited. If a work is authored by an organization, corporation, or government department, use the name of the institution as the author name. If the author name is completely unknown, start the citation with the title.
  • Capitalize each word in the titles of articles and books.
  • If the publication date is not provided, use n.d. If the publisher if not provided, use n.p.
  • If you are placing a URL in your citation, please remove the http:// from the beginning.
  • Title the page: Worked Cited. Do not bold, italicize, or underline the title. Place the title at the top center of the page.
  • List all the sources used for the paper is alphabetical order by author’s last name, or title if there is no author.
  • Use the “special” indent feature to create a hanging indent for every citation.
  • Basic formatting for citations:
    • Author and/or editor names by last name first.
    • “Article name in quotation marks.”
    • Title of the website, project, or book in italics
    • Any version of numbers, including editions (ed.), revisions, volumes (vol.), issue numbers(no.).
    • Publisher information, including the publisher name and date
    • page numbers (p.)
    • URL (without the https://), DOI, or permalink
    • Date you accessed the material (Date Accessed)
Formatting Basics
For a more comprehensive formatting guide, please see the example paper on Purdue Owl.

  • The entire paper should have 1 inch margins on all sides (top, right, left, bottom)
  • The entire paper should be Times New Roman, 12-point font, double spaced
  • Begin the paper with your name, the professor’s name, the course number, and the date of the paper in the top left. Date should be listed as: day, month, year.
  • Page numbers begin on page 1 and end on the final page. Type your last name next to the page number in the header so it appears on every page
  • Titles are centered on the page, 12-point font. Do NOT bold, underline, or italicize the title.
Footnotes/Endnotes
  • Footnotes and endnotes are not often employed in MLA formatting
  • Use footnotes and endnotes only for bibliographic notes
    • For example: State which pages and sources the reader should consult for further information.
  • Use in-text Arabic superscript numbers after the punctuation of a phrase or clause, or before a dash, to which the note is referring
  • Create a separate “Notes” page for endnotes.
    • List all the notes there.
    • After the Works Cited Page
    • First line of each note is indented 5 spaces
Quotations
  • If you add additional words to a quote to increase clarification, place those words in brackets [ ]
  • If you eliminate words from a quote, use an ellipsis …
  • Short Quotes
    • Use quotation marks “” around the direct quote you’re using
    • At the end of the quote, include the in-text citation
    • Punctuation marks:
      • Periods, commas, and semicolons appear AFTER the parenthesis of the in-text citation
      • Exclamation points and questions marks that are part of the direct quote should appear inside the quotation marks; if they’re a part of your own text, place them after the in-text citation
  • Long Quotes
    • A quote that is 4 lines or more is considered a long quotation
    • State long quotes on a new line
    • Indent the entire quote 1/2 inch from the left
    • Punctuation marks appear BEFORE the in-text citation
    • Do NOT include quotation marks around the quote
Section Headings
  • Used to improve readability
  • May be individual chapters
  • Example of way to distinguish between the different sections/headings:
    • Level 1: bold, flush left
    • Level 2: italtics, flush left
    • Level 3: centered, bold
    • Level 4: centered, italics
    • Level 5: underlined, flush left
Books
One Author
Works Cited
Author Last, First. The Title. Publisher, Year.
Example
Pollan, Michael. The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. Penguin, 2006.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Pollan 3)
Two Authors
Works Cited
Author Last, First and Author First Last. The Title. Publisher, Year.
Example
Gillespie, Paula, and Neal Lerner. The Allyn and Bacon Guide to Peer Tutoring. Allyn and Bacon, 2000.
In-text
(Author Last and Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Gillespie and Lerner 5)
Three or More
Works Cited
Select the first author listed on the work to list.
Author Last, First, et al. The Title. Publisher, Year.
Example
Sutherland, William J., et al. What Works in Conservation 2017. Open Book Publishers, 2017.
In-text
(Author Last et al. Page Number)
Example
(Sutherland et al., 18)
Author with Editor
Works Cited
Author Last, First. The Title. Edited by Editor First Last, Publisher, Year.
Example
Poston, Ted. A First Draft of History. Edited by Kathleen A. Hauke, University of Georgia Press, 2000.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Poston 12)
Author with Translator
Works Cited
Author Last, First. The Title. Translated by Translator First Last, Publisher, Year.
Example
Laplace, Pierre-Simon. A Philosophical Essay on Probabilities. Translated by F.W. Truscott and F.L. Emory. John Wiley & Sons, 1902.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Laplace 36)
Editor, No Author
Works Cited
Editor Last, First, editors. The Title. Translated by Translator First Last, Publisher, Year.
Example
Duncan, Greg J., and Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, editors. Consequences of Growing up Poor. Russell Sage Foundation, 1997.
In-text
(Editor Last Page Number)
Example
(Duncan and Brooks-Gunn, 56)
Work In an Anthology
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Title.” The Anthology Title, edited by Editor First Last, Publisher, Year, pp. Page Number Selection
Example
Harris, Muriel. “Talk to Me: Engaging Reluctant Writers.” A Tutor’s Guide: Helping Writers, edited by Ben Rafoth, Heinemann, 2000, pp. 24-34.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Harris 27)
Edition Other Than First
Works Cited
Author Last, First. The Title. Edition, Publisher, Year.
Example
Helfer, M.E., et al. The Battered Child. 5th ed., University of Chicago Press, 1997.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Helfer 163)
Multivolume Work
Works Cited
List the volume that you consulted and its corresponding publication year.
Editor Last, First, editor. The Title. Volume Number, Publisher, Year.
Example
Wiener, Phillip P., editor. The Dictionary of the History of Ideas. Vol. 1, Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1968.
In-text
(Editor Last Page Number)
Example
(Wiener 163)
Foreword, Introduction, Preface, or Afterword
Works Cited
Section Author Last, First. Section Name. The Title, by Author First Last, Publisher, Year, pp. Page Number Selection.
Example
Duncan, Hugh Dalziel. Introduction. Permanence and Change: An Anatomy of Purpose, by Kenneth Burke, University of California Press, 1984, pp. xiii-xliv.
In-text
(Section Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Duncan xxi)
Online
General
Works Cited
Author/Editor Last, First. Name of Site. Name of publisher/organizer, date of publication (if available), URL/DOI/permalink. Date of access (if applicable).
In-text
If author is applicable, use this. If not, use editor. If neither are, use the article or website name.
(Author Last OR Editor Last OR Article Name OR Website Name)
Entire Website
Works Cited
Editor, author, or compiler name (if available) Last, First. Name of Site. Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher, if available), date of resource creation (if available), URL, DOI or permalink. Date of access (if applicable).
Example
The Purdue OWL Family of Sites. The Writing Lab and OWL at Purdue and Purdue U, 2008, owl.english.purdue.edu/owl. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Author Last or Editor Last or Article Name or Website Name)
Example
(Purdue OWL)
Webpage
Works Cited
Editor, author, or compiler name (if available) Last, First. “Title of Webpage.” Name of Site, Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher, if available), date of resource creation (if available), URL, DOI or permalink. Date of access (if applicable).
Example
Shiva, Vandana. “Bioethics: A Third World Issue.” Nativeweb, www.nativeweb.org/pages/legal/shiva.html. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Author Last or Editor Last or Article Name or Website Name)
Example
(Shiva)
Webpage, Unknown Author
Works Cited
“Title of Webpage.” Name of Site, Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher), date of resource creation (if available), URL, DOI or permalink. Date of access (if applicable).
Example
“Media Giants.” Frontline: The Merchants of Cool, PBS, www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/cool/giants. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Article Name or Website Name)
Example
(“Media Giants”)
Image from Website
Works Cited
Creator’s Last, First . “Title of the digital image.” Title of the website, Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher). First name Last name of any contributors, Version (if applicable), Number (if applicable), Publisher, Publication date, URL.
Example
Goya, Francisco. “The Family of Charles IV.” 1800. Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Museo Nacional del Prado, www.museodelprado.es/en/the-collection/art-work/the-family-of-carlos-iv/f4789fc-aa1c-48f6-a77971759e417e74. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Creator Last Name)
Example
(Goya)
Online Book
Works Cited
Author Last, First. The Title. Publisher, Year, Hosting Service, URL.
Example
Delabastita, Dirk, and Lieven D’hulst. European Shakespeares: Translating Shakespeare in the Romantic Age. John Benjamin’s Publishing Company, 1990, ProQuest E-Book, ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/purdue/detail.action?docID=842928.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Dirk and D’hulst 325)
Portion of an Online Book
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Section Title.” The Book Title, Publisher, Year, Hosting Service, URL.
Example
Adams, H. “Diplomacy.” The Education of Henry Adams, Houghton Mifflin Co., 1918. Bartleby, www.bartleby.com/159/8.html.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Adams 22)
Blog Post
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “Title of Post.” Blog Title, Date, Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher), URL. Accessed Date.
Example
Mayer, Caroline. “Stamps to Become a Marketing Vehicle.” The Checkout, 24 May 2006, Washington Post, www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn-content/article/2006/05/23/AR2006052301593.html?noredirct=on. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Author Last Name)
Example
(Mayer)
Email
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “Subject.” Recieved by Recipient Name, Date Received.
Example
Kunka, Andrew. “Re:Modernist Literature.” Received by John, Watts, 15 November 2000.
In-text
(Author Last)
Example
(Kunka)
Government Document Online
Works Cited
Title of Document: Subtitle if Given. Edition if given and is not first edition, Name of Government Department, Agency or Committee, Publication Date, URL. Accessed Access Date.
Example
Highlights from the Competition Bureau’s Workshop on Emerging Competition Issues. Competition Bureau of Canada, 4 Mar. 2016, www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/eic/site/cb-bc.nsf/vwapj/cb-Workshop-Summary-Report-e.pdf/$FILE/cb-Workshop-Summary-Report-e.pdf. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
You can use shorthand to refer to the first word or few words of the title.
(Title of Document)
Example
(Highlights)
Articles
Magazine Article
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Title.” Magazine Title, Date, pp. Page Numbers.
Example
Poniewozik, James. “Election 2000: TV Makes a Too-Close Call.” Time, 20 Nov. 200, pp. 70-71.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Poniewozik 70)
Article in an Online Magazine/Newspaper
Works Cited
Author Last, Author First. “The Title.” Magazine, Newspaper, or Organization Title, Date, URL. Accessed Date.
Example
Bernstein, Mark. “10 Tips of Writing the Living Web.” A List Apart, 16 Aug. 2002, alistapart.com/article/writingliving. Accessed 5 December 2018.
In-text
(Author Last)
Example
(Bernstein)
Scholarly Journal Article
Works Cited
Author Last,First. “The Title.” Journal Title, volume number, issue number, date, page numbers.
Example
Bagchi, Alaknanda. “Conflicting Nationalisms: The Voice of the Subaltern in Mahasweta Devi’s Bashai Tudu.” Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature, vol. 15, no. 1, Spring 1996, pp. 41-50.

In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Bagchi 44)
Article in an Online Journal/From a Database
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Title.” Journal Title, volume number, issue number, date, page numbers (if applicable). Name of Database. URL(permalink) or DOI
Example
Tilly, Charles. “Terror, Terrorism, Terrorists.” Sociological Theory, vol. 22, no. 1, 2004, pp. 5–13. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/3648955.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Tilly 17)
Newspaper Article
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Title.” Newspaper Title, Date, Page Number.
Example
Krugman, Paul. “Fear of Eating.” New York Times, 21 May 2007, late ed., p. A1.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Krugman A1)
Editorial in Newspaper, No Author
Works Cited
“The Title.” Editorial. Newspaper Title, Date, page number.
Example
“Of Mines and Men.” Editorial. Wall Street Journal, 24 Oct. 2003, p. A14.
In-text
(“Title” Page Number)
Example
(“Of Mines and Men” A14)
Letter to the Editor
Works Cited
Author Last, First. Letter. Title of Periodicals, Date, page number.
Example
Hamer, John. Letter. American Journalism Review, Dec. 2006/Jan. 2007, p. 7.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Hamer 7)
Book/Film Review
Works Cited
Author Last, First. “The Title.” Review of Original Material Title, directed by/written by First Last Name, Periodical Title, Date, page number (or URL).
Example
Seitz, Matt Zoller. “Life in the Sprawling Suburbs, If You Can Really Call It Living.” Review of Radiant City, directed by Gary Burns and Jim Brown, New York Times, 30 May 2007, p. E1.
In-text
(Author Last Page Number)
Example
(Seitz E1)
Media
General
Works Cited
Creator Last, First. “The Title.” Title of container, Other contributors, Version (Edition), Number, Publisher,Publication, Date, Location. Date of Access.
In-text
(Creator Last or Title)
Video/Film
Works Cited
The Title. Directed by Director First Last. Producer, Date.
Example
An Inconvenient Truth. Directed by David Guggenheim. Paramount Home Entertainment, 2006.
In-text
(Title of Movie Start Time of Relevant Section-End Time of Section)
Example
(An Inconvenient Truth 0:14:51-0:15:23)
Podcast/YouTube
Works Cited
Creator First, Last or Company/Organization. “Title.” Platform, Uploaded by Channel Name, Date URL
Example
UW Tacoma Multimedia Lab. “Videography Tips and Tricks to Produce a Documentary Profile Price.” YouTube, Uploaded by UW Tacoma Multimedia Lab, 30 Sept. 2015, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_fiNRFcbwy
In-text
(Creator Name)
Example
(UW Tacoma Multimedia Lab)
Television Shows
Works Cited
“Episode Title”. Show Title, written by Author First Last, directed by Director First Last, Production Company, Year.
Example
“The One Where Chandler Can’t Cry.” Friends: The Complete Sixth Season, written by Andrew Reich and Ted Cohen, directed by Kevin Bright, Warner Brothers, 2004.
In-text
(“Title of Episode” Start Time of Relevant Section-End Time of Section)
Example
(“The One Where Chandler” 00:14:56-00:15:33)
Song or Album
Works Cited
Creator/Artist Last, First. “Song Title.” Album Title, Production (Record) Company, Year.
Example
Nirvana. “Smells like Time Spirit.” Nevermind, Geffen, 1991.
In-text
(Artist Name)
Example
(Nirvana)
Lecture
Works Cited
Speaker Last, First. “Title,.” Panel name, Conference name, Date, Location, City, State (if applicable). Type of Lecture (if applicable, such as Keynote Address, State of the Union, etc.)
Example
Stein, Bob. “Reading and Writing in the Digital Era.” Discovering Digital Dimensions, Computers and Writing Conference, 23 May 2003, Union Club Hotel, West Lafayette, IN. Keynote Address.
In-text
(Speaker Last)
Example
(Stein)
Advertisement
Works Cited
Name of Company That Owns the Product advertisement. Name of Magazine, Journal or Newspaper Where Advertisement Was Accessed, Date, p. Page number of advertisement.
Example
Louis Vuitton advertisement. Vogue, Dec. 2015, p. 5.
In-text
(Name of Company That Owns the Product)
Example
(Louis Vuitton)
Twitter
Works Cited
Twitter Handle (First Name Last Name if Known). “The entire tweet word-for-word.” Twitter, Day Month Year of Tweet, Time of Tweet, URL.
Example
@ReallyVirtual (Sohaib Athar). “Helicopter hovering above Abbottad at 1AM is a rare event.” Twitter, 4 Jan. 2013, 3:58 p.m. twitter.com/reallyvirtual/status/64780730286358528?lang=en.
In-text
(Twitter handle)
Example
(@ReallyVirtua)
Charts, Tables, Graphs, and Images
Label all images, charts, or graphs with Fig. #, starting at 1. The caption for a image goes below the image, beginning with its Fig. # label, then a short descriptor. You can include your citation for the image in the caption or in the Works Cited. It does not have to be in both. Charts and graphs have their Fig. # label above them, and the citation is underneath, labelled as “source”. Tables are labeled as Table #, starting with 1. The label and title go above the table and the citation, labelled as “source”, goes below.

Example:

A woodblock painting of a Japanese woman from the from the series Anthology of Poems: The Love Section, titled Deeply Hidden Love.

Fig. 1. A Japanese woodblock painting. Kitagawa Utamaro. Deeply Hidden Love; from the series Anthology of Poems: The Love Section (Kasen koi no bu; Love Deeply Concealed: Great Love Themes of Classical Poetry). c. 1793-94. Artstor, library.artstor.org/asset/ARMNIG_10313470243

Pew Research Center: #Ferguson Used Differently on Twitter and Instagram

A table from the Pew Research Center, title #Ferguson used Differently on Twitter and Instagram, based on a study ran from March 3-25, 2015. On Twitter, 86% were related to the Ferguson saga, and on Instagram, it was 38%, respectively 14% unrelated and 62% unrelated. On Twitter, 71% conveyed information about a specific event, and 36% on Instagram. 29% on Twitter were about a theme or idea, an 64% on Instagram. This table is just an example.

Table 1. Source: Hitlin, Paul and Jesse Holcomb. “From Twitter to Instagram, a different #Ferguson conversation.” Pew Research Center, 6 April 2015, www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/04/06/from-twitter-to-instagram-a-different-ferguson/. Accessed 10 December 2018.

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