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MLA Citations Web Sites

Citation Examples

Why Cite?

When you include someone else’s ideas in a paper, you must document or cite the sources of the ideas. In other words, if you have learned anything new and include it in your paper, you must give credit to whoever provided the new information

Book with One Author

Hoffman, Alice. The Marriage of Opposites. Simon & Schuster, 2015.

Book with Two Authors

Bagchi, Debasis C. and Nair D. Sreejayan. Nutritional and Therapeutic Interventions for Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome. Academic P, 2012.

Book with More than Two Authors

Lewis, Sharon M., et al. Medical-Surgical Nursing: Assessment and Management of Clinical Problems. Elsevier, 2014.

Book with an Editor

Howell, Elizabeth F., and Sheldon Itzkowitz, editors. The Dissociative Mind in Psychoanalysis: Understanding and Working with Trauma. Routledge, 2016.

Work in an  Anthology

Blumber, Robyn. “The Free Speech Rights of Abortion Protesters Should Not Be Restricted.” Censorship: Opposing Viewpoints, edited by Tamara L. Roleff, Greenhaven, 2012, pp. 54-58.


Kater, Michael H. Hitler Youth. Harvard UP, 2004. eBook Collection, login? %26AN%3d282437%26site%3dehost-live.

Database Periodical (Newspaper or Magazine) with permalink

Palilt, Amitendu. “The TPP and its Implications for Beijing.” China Daily U.S. Edition, 24 Feb. 2016, p. A1, Newsbank, resources/doc/ nb/news/ 15B3729A28B3EFE8?p=AWNB.

Database Journal Article with DOI

Kocol, Cleo Fellers. "The Feminist Caucus of the American Humanist Association: A Brief Herstory." The Humanist, vol. 72, no. 5, Sept.-Oct. 2012, p.18. Academic Search Complete, doi: 10.1186/s13229-016-0112-x.

Database Reference Book Article

Tomlinson, Alan. “Olympic Ceremony.” A Dictionary of Sports Studies, Oxford UP, 2016. Oxford Reference, /view/10.1093/ acref/ 9780199213818.001.0001/acref-9780199213818-e-819.

Website with a corporate (government) author

United States, Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Drought and Your Health.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 25 July 2016,

Website without an Author

“Performance-enhancing Drugs: Know the Risks.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2016, fitness/in-depth /performance-enhancing-drugs/ art-20046134.

Image from a Website

“Williams.” LancasterOnline, 6 June 2016, builder-of proposed.html.

Video from a Website (YouTube Video)

Headlee, Celeste. “10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation.” TED Talks, 8 Mar. 2016. YouTube,

Newspaper/Magazine Article from its own Website

Suderman, Alan. “Environmentalists, Utilities Eye Richmond Coal Ash Trial.” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 13 July 2016, Environmentalists-utilities-eye-Richmond-coal-ash-trial-Dominion-Clean-WaterAct/stories/201607130090.

Personal Interview

Jones, Martin. Telephone Interview. 02 Aug. 2016.

MLA Source Information Worksheets

These fillable worksheets will guide you through identifying the types of information you need to gather about a source in order to create the citation within the Works Cited page. When you are asked for a "Container" you are being asked for the larger source that your article, webpage, or chapter is contained within. For example, a chapter is contained within a book. 

MLA Works Cited by the OWL at Purdue

MLA Style: List of Works Cited Transcript[♪piano♪] MLA Style: List of Works Cited. A vidcast lecture brought to you by Derek Sherman in cooperation with Purdue Online Writing Lab. [♪piano fades out♪] Core Elements to Citing: There are eight elements to citing a source in MLA's eighth edition. The following are the core elements to citing. Author, Title of Source, Container, Version, Volume and/or Issue Number, Publisher, Publication Date, and Location. The goal of this video is to provide you with a basic understanding of these terms as well as how to put together a citation using this information for a Works Cited page. For in-text citations, please the additional in-text citations video provided on OWL's YouTube page. Author: The author is usually prominently displayed on the source that you are consulting. For example, on a database article, the author will usually appear on the first information page or directly on the first page of the source. Therefore, the author will often be near the title of the work. Once you have found the author, now is the time to begin working on citing the author's name. You will need to start your works cited entry with the author's last name followed by a comma and then the author's first name followed by a period. See that in this example, the author's last name is written first followed by a comma. After the comma the author's first name is written and followed by a period. Title of Source: The title of the source, like the author, is usually prominently displayed on the work and is in a larger font for easy visibility. On a database article, the title is the first item listed on the information page. On a book, the title is mostly on the front cover or spine of the book. When you go to cite the title, make sure you have already cited the author. Once you are ready to begin the citation of the source title, you need to make sure you follow three rules. First, make sure you use standardized capitalization. Second, if it is the name of a larger work (for example a book) you will need to italicize the title. Third, if it is the name of a smaller work contained within a larger work (for example a chapter in a book, an article, etc.), you will need to make sure it is in quotation marks. After placing the title of the source, make sure you have ending punctuation. Meaning, you need to place a period, exclamation point, or question mark. Notice that this example has a smaller work contained within a larger work. Therefore the title of the work is in quotation marks rather than in italics. So, the title starts with the opening quotation marks, followed by the title in standardized capitalization. Once the title is written, the ending punctuation is placed and followed by the closing quotation marks. Container: The container is simply the larger source that your article or chapter is contained within. Examples of containers include: a book that is a collection, a periodical, a television series, a website, or even an issue of a comic book. So, if you are citing an entire book, then you would not have to place anything in this position, because you have already cited the container. However, if you are citing a smaller work within a larger work, then the container citation is necessary, so that the reader can access your source. If citing a container, make sure it is always italicized and follows standardized capitalization protocol. When writing the container in your citation, make sure you place a comma after the container, especially since the next information describes this container. In this example, is italicized and is directly after the title of the smaller work. Once the container is written with standard capitalization rules, a comma is placed after the title. Other contributors: Other contributors is not something unusual in citations, but you may not have called it this before. This portion of a citation does not apply to all works, but it is still important to note in case you do have a work that utilizes other contributors. This portion of a citation occurs if you are working with a source that is adapted, directed, illustrated, edited, or translated by someone else. Additionally, works that include an introduction by, narrated by, or a performance by are included in the other contributors section as well. Notice in this example that after the container comes the other contributors portion. The other contributors portion starts with "edited by" and is followed by the author's first name and then last name. After the author's last name, a comma is placed. Version: Not all sources will have a version, but if they do, it could fall under one of the following categories: a numbered edition, a revised edition, an authorized Bible version, an updated edition, an expanded edition, or a director's cut. Most of your journal citations will not contain a version; however, if you do have a source that contains a version, it would look like the following. Notice in this example that there is no other contributors so if there are no other contributors, you skip that portion of the citation. Notice that we are using the entire container in this citation rather than a chapter or portion. So the container is in italics, in standardized capitalization followed by a period. The edition then follows the container. If you do have an edition, you would need to write it as follows: "5th ed." followed by a comma. Volume and Issue Number: Volume and issue number are not new things to enter in MLA citation; however, the way they are written is different compared to previous edition. Most sources that will contain a volume and/or issue number include multi-volume book sets, journal issues, comic books, and seasons of a television series, which are written out as season number followed by the episode number. For a journal article, the volume and issue can usually be found on the first printed page of a journal article or it will appear in the corner of the first page of the article. However, journals are different, so you may have to hunt for this part. In this example, we see that there is a volume number and an issue number, which are written differently than previous editions of MLA. In the eighth edition of MLA, you need to place the volume and issue number directly after the container and they are separated by a comma rather than by parentheses. So, you will need to write out the volume as "vol." followed by the number, which is then followed by a comma. After that comma, place the number issue, which is written out as "no." followed by the number. Once the number is typed, you need to place another comma, so that you may continue describing the container. Publisher: Publishers are simply the organization that is responsible for making the source available to the public, so think book publisher. Book publishers can easily be found on the copyright page, which is usually located on the left-hand side of the page after the title page. However, you can also find book publishers on the spine, front, or back cover of a book as well. For web sources, the publisher could range from museums, libraries, universities and their departments. To find the publisher, look down at the bottom of a home page or on an information page provided by the website. The publisher in this example is written directly after the other contributors portion because there is no edition or volume and/or issue number. The publisher is simply written out and followed by a comma, so that you may continue further describing the container. Date: Date is a staple in MLA citations because it lets your reader know that you have an updated source or that you are using a specific historical source. Depending on the type of the source, the date can be found in a variety of locations. For example, a journal article that is downloaded from a library's database, should have the date on the information page or the first page. Additionally, the date can be found on the copyright page in a published book. If you are citing a website, the date should be easily located, so your citation should carry the entire date. Day, month, year. Notice in this example that the date is written directly after the publisher. The date is followed by a comma. In this journal citation, the date is directly after the volume and issue number. If you have a date with a month attached, make sure the month is abbreviated with the exception of four-letter months. In both examples, regardless, the date is followed by a comma so that the container can continue being described. Location: Specifying the location of a work depends on the medium the source is located. If you are citing a specific page, you will need to write "p." followed by the page number; however, if you have multiple pages, you will need to write "pp." followed by the page range. The first example shows what a page range would look like written out with the "pp." followed by the range of numbers. In this second example, there is only a page, so only "p." is placed and followed by the page number. However, there is also something known as a DOI or Digital Object Identifier, which is used for journal articles. The DOI will be located on the information page of the printed article or will be found on the first page of the article. If the article you have has a DOI, please make sure you provide the name of the database where you accessed the source. Therefore, you put the name of the database in italics with standardized capitalization followed by a comma, which is then followed up by the DOI. In this example, we see that the DOI is preceded by the name of the database. Therefore, the database is followed by a comma. Once the comma is written the DOI number is placed and the citation is concluded with the placement of a period. [♪piano♪] Thank you for watching this Purdue Online Writing Lab video production. For additional citation videos or writing help, please make sure you visit the Purdue OWL's YouTube page or website at

MLA In-Text Citation

MLA Style: In-Text Citations Transcript MLA style In-Text Citations, a vidcast lecture, brought to you by Eliza Gellis, in cooperation with the Purdue Online Writing Lab. What is an in-text citation? In MLA, when you reference others' work in your writing, you use a parenthetical, or an in-text, citation. This involves placing that source information in parentheses at the end of the sentence. So, when do you need an in-text citation? You use in-text citations in two situations. One, when you directly quote someone, like here for example, where we use Wordsworth's own words. Or two, when you reference or paraphrase their work, like we do here when we summarize Wordsworth's ideas in our own words So, how do you cite in-text? First, there is author-page style. Just use the author's last name, followed by the page number. If there is no page number, just the name is fine. For example, here we show Wordsworth's name and the page where we got the quote. For a corporate author, just use the name of the organization, followed by the page number, if there is one. As we can see here, we summarize information from an EPA report, listing both the EPA and the page we're paraphrasing. For two authors, list both last names in the order they appear in the source, like we do here with Best and Marcus. For three or more authors, list the first author's last name and replace the other authors' last names with "et al.," just like the example. Only the first author's name is shown. If you're using more than one work by an author, use a shortened version of the title in your citation to specify which work you're citing. Looking to the example below, here we use "Visual Studies" as a shortened title to let our readers know specifically which of Elkins' pieces we're quoting. And if there is no author, just use a shortened version of the title. Again, here we use "Impact of Global Warming" to help our readers identify which piece we are quoting, since this article has no author. With online sources, you're unlikely to have a page number, so just the author's name or the title is fine. For example, since the Purdue OWL webpage doesn't have numbered pages, we just list the authors who worked on the specific piece we're quoting. Still confused or unsure? When in doubt, just remember that your in-text citation should match up with the first thing listed for that source in your works cited. Lastly, there's signaling in-text. That's when you incorporate all or part of your parenthetical citation into the sentence itself. Thinking through this, we can see from the example below that we've included the author's name, part of our citation, into the sentence itself. This is often the most elegant way to incorporate a quote and use an in-text citation. Thanks for watching, and don't forget to check out Purdue OWL's other resources on our website. This vidcast uses MLA 8th edition. For more information, visit our page on MLA 8.

MLA In-text citation flowchart - refer to outline after image 

Outline Summary - MLA In-Text Citations Flowchart
  1. Q: Are you paraphrasing or quoting from a source?
    1. If No, You do not need to provide a citation in parentheses.
    2. If Yes, Q: Does your source have page numbers?
      1. If No, You will not include any numbers in your in-text citation. Move to Q: “Are you able to Identify an author?”
      2. If Yes, Include the page number of the information you used in your in-text citation. Move to Q: “Are you able to Identify an author?”
  2. Q: Are you able to identify an author? 
    1. If No, Use a shortened version of the title, in quotations marks
    2. If Yes, Q: Are the authors identified by first and last names
      1. If No, Use the group, organization or department name
      2. If Yes, Q: “How many authors are there?”
        1. One: Use the last name only
        2. Two: Use both last names with the word and in between
        3. Three or more: Use the first author’s last name followed by et al.
  3. Q: Did you put any author names or page numbers in the sentence where you used the information?
    1. If Yes, You do not need to duplicate what you already wrote within parentheses.
    2. If No, Place the information in parentheses at the end of the sentence before the period.
Examples of two authors with page information: 
Smith and Jones noted 5% increase in the use of infographics in the last two years (45).
There was a 5% increase in the use of infographics in the last two years (Smith and Jones 45).

MLA Handbook (8th Edition)