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Accurate MLA Citation Guide For Students

MLA style format, which stands for Modern Language Association, is most commonly used in literature, philosophy, mathematics, and social and physical sciences, history, and language assignments. Taking place of a most frequent style format, MLA style citation has certain rules that have to be followed in order to avoid one’s grade being decreased. Keeping all these citation struggles in mind, we offer you MLA Citation Generator, which helps with most citing challenges in no time. Wishing to make your citing experience even better, our writing experts at EduBirdie provide you with MLA rules guide to help you understand format’s writing mechanics. From MLA in text citation website rules to Works Cited page, follow handy examples to assure that there will be no mistakes in your paper.

MLA In-Text Citations Format Rules

Note: In this guide, we are going to use the rules that comply with MLA 8 changes. Looking through provided examples, make a mental note that the text in italics is placed with an intention, – all punctuation style, indents, and italics must be followed to a letter.

An in-text citation means that quote and information about author are placed in text of paper. If available, this information is brought in parenthesis after the quotation.

Remember that our MLA Referencing Generator allows generating both in-text citations and references for the Works Cited page.

  • One author in a print source

For books, magazines, academic journal articles, and newspapers, provide author’s last name with page number, if available. If name is already specified in same sentence where quote is placed, page number in parenthetical citation is used.

For example:

Healthcare ER personnel, according to Hicks, always finds it difficult to manage stressful situations related to peer-pressure (4).

Healthcare ER personnel “finds it difficult to manage stressful situations related to peer pressure” (Hicks 4).

  • Multiple book authors in MLA

Dealing with two or more authors for book citation, list last author’s names. For example:

Business management strategies, as researched by Apeldorn and Berger, proved that financial analysis issues should be discussed during corporate meetings (3).

According to the journalist, business management strategies “should have financial analysis issues discussed during corporate meetings” (Apeldorn and Berger 3).

  • No author or an organization

Use a shortened title of a source or an article’s title. If it is short, just put it in quotation marks. If it is a long title, italicize it. If a page number is available, provide it as well. An example:

Formatting issues become one of the most challenging issues for novice students due to a lack of style clarity and inexperience of writing mechanics skills. (“Novice Students Education Issues”).

  • No page number in MLA referencing website

Use chapter or paragraph number (Buck, par. 4). Chapter or a paragraph should be present in an original source.

  • Multiple sources in one citation

Separate such citations by a semi-colon as shown below:

… according to chosen research methods (Atkinson 12; Brownie 331).

  • Different authors with a same last name

Provide first initials of both authors:

According to the latest research, (A. Vuzella 12), there is no evidence that would confirm the link between vaccination and the cases of autism (E. Vuzella 41).

  • Multiple works from the same author in MLA

Add book’s title or an article.

(Woody, English Poetry and Motivation 132)

(Woody, Analytical Role of Nature in Renaissance Poetry 21)

  • Two or more works by the same author, published in a same year

Such source is told apart by addition of a lower-case letter after the year.

Majority of students have found field work to be more applicable for the practice knowledge. (Davenport, 2003a)

  • Periodicals and anthologies sources

For example, citing an article by Anthony Phillips in a published anthology by Geographic National, consisting of 200 pages, citation follows this example:

The water sources have remained the same, despite the use of drainage water pipes (Philips 325).

  • Multivolume works in MLA

Include volume number that is followed by a colon with a space:

… as Hillary pointed out in National Archaeology Archives (1: 13-18)

  • Electronic sources with no author or non-print sources

Name should come first in electronic source in-text citation. If there is no author, start with a title.

(“Workplace Bullying”)

If there is no title, use existing website title:

(“Facebook Content”) or (“Australia Weekly News”).

  • Citing indirect sources

It means that an indirect source is a source that is also cited in a different book or journal. For such case, use “qtd. in” to specify a source that you refer to.

Tomlin believes that gender policies are “too vague with the common workplace practices in the modern society and business methods” (qtd. in Ralf 33).

MLA Works Cited Page Example Manual

Note: In MLA style, references in Works Cited page are listed alphabetically. A second line of a reference should have an indent. Use a TAB key. Remember that using MLA citation generator, you have to check for indents and italics.

  • A single book author

Start with an Author Last Name, First Name, Title in italics, source or publisher, year of publishing.

An example:

Garreth, Andrew. The Middle Ages Poetry. Harvard University, 2007.

  • Multiple book authors

Use authors’ names in a same way as done in a source journal or a book. For example:

Barneby Paul, and Ned Turner. The Guide to Adaptive Psychology. Bernt Publishing, 2000.

If there are three or more authors, list only the first author followed by et al. phrase. See below:

Barneby, Ned Turner, et al. Socrates Method in Sociology. University Press, 2005.

  • Citing Journal Articles and Academic Journals

For academic source or a scholarly journal in MLA article citation, follow this template:

Author(s). “Title of Article.” Title of Journal, Volume, Issue, Year, pages. An example:

Blink, Laura. “Cultural Analysis of Aboriginal Tribes: Authenticity in Education.” Australia’s Social Studies, vol. 13, no. 4, 2016, pp. 27-24.

  • MLA citation website

Include complete address for a web site except for the HTTP part. Follow citation format of: editor, author, or organization (if available).

Title of Site. Version number, Institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher), date of resource creation (if available), URL, DOI or permalink. Access Date.

Uniting Cultural Traits and the Local Festivals. National Cultural Agency, 2007, Accessed 2 Feb. 2019.

  • Anthologies and complex sources citing with no author

In an Anthology citing, Works Cited entry should look like this:

Holmes, John R., and Maddie Tops, editors. Defining Special Education. London House Publishing, 2007.

  • Poetry citation in an Anthology:

Shakespeare, William. “Sonnet 17.” Best-Loved English Poems, edited by Tom Sanders, Penguin Books, 2005, p. 159.

  • Electronic source citation rules
  1. Start with author or editor first (if available).
  2. If not available, use existing website, article or a post in italics.
  3. Use publisher’s information next, if available, or website title (or a section).
  4. If page numbers are not available, write par. or pars. instead to note paragraph numbers.
  5. Include URL with a DOI number, if provided. Using Edubirdie MLA citation generator, just copy and paste DOI of needed article. Citation will generate automatically.
  • Youtube and Social Media citation

For YouTube citations:

Last name, Author First name. “Film or video title.” Website, Publication date, URL.

Follow this example:

Palgrave Tim. “How to Access Online Libraries.” YouTube, 21 Feb. 2019,

For Facebook citations:

Author Last Name, First Name or Account Name. Description of Post. Facebook, Day Month Year of Post, Time of Post, URL. Accessed Day Month Year post was accessed.

For example:

Canberra National Park. The Life of Koalas. Facebook, 1 Feb. 2019, 8:00 a.m., www.facebook/. Accessed 27 February 2019.

  • Blogs and Magazines

Citing of blog and web magazines is implemented as a standard web entry. You have to provide:

  1. Work’s Author,
  2. Title of a posting in quotation marks,
  3. Website in italics, the publisher,
  4. Posting date,
  5. An access date of access,
  6. If no author is given, use screen names as author names. If available, place in brackets.
  • Songs and Movies MLA citation

Music and movies citing in MLA style format depends on a source. Follow this template:

  1. Start with an artist name.
  2. If not available, list computer and performed information after album’s title used instead.
  3. Place individual song titles in quotation marks.
  4. Album titles are italicized.
  5. Provide recording manufacturer.
  6. Publication date.

As in example:

Soul Asylum. “Runaway Train”, Grave Dancers Union, Columbia, 1992.

  • Lectures and Presentations MLA Citation

Start by providing lecture speaker name. Next, provide title of a speech (if available) in quotation marks. Continue with name of particular conference or a meeting and then with organization. Mention venue and the city. Use the most fitting descriptor that appropriately expresses a kind or type of a lecture or presentation.

For example: a lecture, conference, reading, keynote speech, presentation, persuasive speech or a guest lecture.

See below:

Rogers, Sean. “Aboriginal Culture in the Modern Times.” Cultural International Conference Lecture, 3 May 2002, Sydney, Australia. Guest Lecture.

These are the most frequent MLA citation examples suitable for the written assignments. With over 10-15 citations, make sure to try our MLA citation generator or turn to one of skilled format citation experts at EduBirdie if your citation type is not listed here.

Modern Language Association General Rules

In addition to citing rules, MLA style also has these crucial rules:

  1. Paper should be typed on a computer and printed out using standard white 8.5 x 11 inches document.
  2. A recommended font size is 12 pt.
  3. Only one space should be left after periods or other punctuation marks.
  4. Text should be double-spaced. Recommended font is Times New Roman or Arial.
  5. Margins in MLA format are set to 1 inch on all sides.
  6. First line paragraph indent is one half-inch from the left margins. Use TAB key.
  7. MLA header should contain page numbers in upper right-hand corner.
  8. Write titles of longer sources in italics.
  9. If you prefer footnotes or endnotes, they should be included on a separate page before the Works Cited page starts. Such section should be centred, unformatted, and named as “Notes”.
  10. Title page is not generally needed, unless specifically requested.
  11. Title of MLA paper should be centred.
  12. Create header in upper right-hand corner and include your last name followed by page number, divided by a space.

MLA Generator for Quick Formatting

Most college and university students have to deal with 10-15 MLA citations for a standard paper. With several written assignments at hand, MLA citation becomes time consuming, which only increases the risks of plagiarism and mistakes in citation, both in-text and Works Cited page. MLA citation machine makes sure that no plagiarism risks or mistakes can plaque your paper.

Turning to EduBirdie essay writers, you can combine direct expert’s help available 24/7 with MLA citations generator to achieve the best results possible. Working with an expert in your particular topic, you also make sure that your citations and sources and checked for professional accuracy and relevancy.

MLA Format Frequently Asked Questions

  • I have complex MLA style citation problem that is not listed in MLA guide. Can you help me and provide an example?

Yes! Any type of citation can be nailed down by our professionals. Choose a writer from the list, based on your requirements, share the grading rubric, and worry no more!

  • Are MLA 7 and MLA 8 the same?

No, 8 is format’s latest edition and has several important punctuation differences. However, if required, we can assist with 7 or any other style.

  • Can you provide MLA 8 templates?

Yes! Our writers have helpful templates for any style and format. We can assist you with any format examples, suited to your specific MLA assignment.

  • Can you check formatting in my MLA paper and edit?

Yes, this is what proofreading professionals do. Moreover, your paper can be checked for use of professional terms and a flow of ideas presented.

  • I have good sources for my paper, but they are in APA. Can you cite this for me MLA?

Yes! All you have to do is share your sources and the task with one of our writers and get things done in time! Alternatively, free MLA Reference Generator also assists you with this task as you can enter all the available citing information manually!