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Student Guide to the MLA Works Cited List

NOTE: This guide to preparing an MLA Format Works Cited List is adapted for use with the Little, Brown Compact Handbook.

INTRODUCTION

When a writing assignment requires research, any information you quote, summarize or paraphrase in your paper must be acknowledged and documented with a citation. Document all of your sources to avoid plagiarism.

The MLA (or Modern Language Association) documentation system consists of two parts:

  • In-text or Parenthetical references within the body of your text to help your reader locate the full reference in the Works Cited List. In-text references must include just enough information for the reader to locate the appropriate source in your Works Cited List and just enough information for the reader to locate the place within the source where the borrowed material appears.

    Example: "The restaurant was known for its authentic menu." (Smith 21)

    [Smith is the author's last name as listed in the Works Cited List and 21 is the page number within that source.]

  • For guidelines on incorporating quotations within the body of your paper (in-text parenthetical references ) speak with your instructor, consult your Little, Brown Handbook, or view the companion web site to the Handbook (go to: http://wps.ablongman.com/long_fowler_lbh_9,click on "Documentation in the Disciplines" then click on "MLA Style" )

A Works Cited List at the end of the paper cites or documents the sources of information you used in your paper. The in-text references guide the reader to the citation in your Works Cited List.


BASIC STEPS FOR PREPARING AN MLA LIST OF WORKS CITED

  1. Title your list "Works Cited."
  2. Determine the type of source you are citing (book, periodical article, website, etc.) then follow the citation format instructions below for that type of source.
  3. Arrange all works, both print and nonprint, in one alphabetical list by author, or by title if there is no author.
    [If listing work by title, alphabetize by the first main word in the title, not by initial article, such as "A", "An", "The"]
    Do not list sources by type or by date.
  4. Double space both within and between entries. (Not shown here)
  5. Type the first line of each entry at the left margin, indent the following lines five spaces or one tab.
  6. Capitalize all main title words (even if they are not capitalized in original source).
    • Use quotation marks for article or book chapter titles.
    • Underline or italicize the titles of books, magazines, journals and plays.

      [Note: Titles are italicized in these examples, but underlined titles are also correct. Be consistent, don't use both italics and underline.]

  7. List main authors: last name, first name. [Example: Hacker, Diana.]
    • If there are two or three authors, list second and third authors: first name last name.

      Smith, Henry S., Robert J. Kelley, and Sarah S. Miller.

    • If there are more than three authors listed, include only the first author's name (last name, first name) followed by et al.

      Smith, Henry S., et al.

  8. Citation formats are different for different types of periodicals. Include volume and issue numbers only for journals; do not include volume and issue numbers for magazine and newspaper articles. Do not include city of publication for periodical articles, only for books.

    Use page range [example 23-9], page number+ [example 15+] or use n. pag. if no page numbers are given.

  9. For articles from library subscription services (such as Proquest), cite the article then include the name of the database within the service (if known), the name of the subscription service, the name of the subscribing institution and library, the date you accessed the article and main URL of database. See examples below.
  10. Remember: Citation formats vary for different types of sources (e.g., books, periodical articles, web sites).
    Also, citations found within online subscription services (databases) are generally not in MLA Format
For more information, try: Frequently Asked Questions about MLA Style .

or view the companion website to the Little Brown Handbook
(go to: http://wps.ablongman.com/long_fowler_lbh_9,click on "Documentation in the Disciplines" then click on "MLA Style")


EXAMPLES FOR DIFFERENT TYPES OF SOURCES BY FORMAT:

Quick Links:

FORMAT FOR PRINT SOURCES

Format for Books:

Author's Name or Editor's Name [Last Name, First Name]. "Article or Chapter Title." Book Title [in italics or underlined]. Place of Publication [City*]: Publisher, date. [*include State abbreviation if city name is not unique]

Format for Periodical Articles (magazines, newspapers, scholarly journals):

Magazine Article

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Article Title." Magazine Title day month year: pages.

Newspaper Article

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Article Title." Newspaper Title day month year: section pages.

Scholarly Journal Article

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Article Title." Journal Title volume.issue number (year): pages.

EXAMPLE CITATIONS FOR PRINT SOURCES

Books with Author, Authors or Editor:

Bronte, Emily. Wuthering Heights . New York: Oxford UP, 1999.

[NOTE: UP is the abbreviation for University Press]

Smith, Matthew J., and Andrew F. Wood. Survivor Lessons: Essays on Communication and Reality Television.Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co., 2003.

Fitzgerald, Terence, ed. Police in Society. New York: H.W. Wilson, 2000.

Book Chapter in a Collection:

Stackhouse, Kenneth A. "Pablo Neruda." Critical Survey of Poetry. Ed. Frank Magill. Vol. 3. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Salem Press, 1984. 1069-80.

Article in an Encyclopedia:

Spiller, Michael R. "Poetry: The English Sonnet." Encyclopedia of the Renaissance. Ed. Paul F. Grendler. Vol. 5. New York: Scribner's, 1999. 6 vols.

If no author, begin with article title:

"George Smith Patton Jr." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd ed. Vol. 12. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 17 vols.

Popular Magazine Article:

Samuels, Allison, N'Gai Croal, and David Gates. "Battle for the Soul of Hip-Hop." Newsweek 9 Oct. 2000: 58-65.

Scholarly Journal Article with Volume and Issue Number [ volume number.issue number (year) ]:

Jones, Harriet. "Free Information." History Today 50.8 (2000): 18-19.

Newspaper Article:

Ursell, Amanda. "Feel Full on Fewer Calories." Los Angeles Times 5 Aug. 2002: S4.

If no author, begin with article title:

"The Coolest Place to Be When It's Hot Outside." Los Angeles Times 4 June 2006: B3+.

Magazine Article Reprinted in a Reference Book:

Gibbs, Walcott. "Such Nice People." New Yorker 7 Apr. 1945: 39-40. Rpt. in Drama Criticism. Ed. Lawrence J. Trudeau. Vol 4. Detroit: Gale, 1994. 257-65.

Book Chapter Reprinted in Reference Book :

Walters, Mark. "Violence and Comedy in the Works of Flannery O'Connor." New Perspectives on Women and Comedy . Ed. Regina Barreca. Philadelphia: Gordon and Breach, 1992. 185-92. Rpt. in Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed. Janet Witalec. Vol. 132. Detroit: Gale, 2003. 315-18.


FORMAT FOR SOURCES FROM ONLINE SUBSCRIPTION SERVICES (Library Databases):

NOTE: Online Subscription Services such as Proquest, SIRS, or Opposing Viewpoints contain multiple databases.
After you cite the article in the proper format for the type of source, include the following:

the name of Database [if known**]. Name of Subscription Service. Subscribing Institution, Library Name. Date Article was Accessed. Main URL for the subscription service. **It is difficult to locate the name of the database within Proquest.

Kelleher, Elizabeth. "U.S. Immigrants Fuel Local Economies in Their Home Countries: Remittances are Increasing and Are Becoming Easier to Track, Experts Say." Washington File 24 Apr. 2006. Government Reporter &SIRS. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 7 July 2006 <http://sks.sirs.com>.

NOTE: this example is adapted for the Little, Brown Compact Handbook.

Format for Magazine Articles:

Author [Last Name, First Name]. "Title of Article." [in quotation marks] Magazine Title [in italics or underlined] issue date [day month year]: page number(s). Name of Database. [if known] Name of Subscription Service. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. Date accessed [day month year] <main URL for the service [see examples below]>.

Format for Journal Articles:

Author [Last Name, First name]. "Title of Article." Journal Title [in italics or underlined] Volume number. issue number (Year): pages. Name of Database. [if known]. Name of Subscription Service. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. Date accessed [day month year]. <main URL for the Service [see examples below]>.

Format for Newspaper Articles:

Author [Last Name, First Name]. "Title of Article." [in quotation marks] Newspaper Title [in italics or underlined] issue date [day month year]: section and page number(s). Name of Database. [if known]. Name of Subscription Service. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. Date accessed [day month year]<main URL for the Service [see examples below]>.

Format for Articles or Book Chapters Reprinted in Reference Databases:

Author [Last Name, First Name]. �Title of Article.� Title of Original Source. [in italics or underlined] Publication Date and/or Publisher Information *: Pages [in original source] Rpt. in Name of Database. [if known] Name of Subscription Service. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. Date accessed [day month year] <main URL for the Service [see examples below]>.
*follow the format for the type of item, i.e., book, magazine, journal, newspaper.

Example Citations from Online Subscription Services (Library Databases):

Articles from Proquest:

Magazine Article

Samuels, Allison, N'Gai Croal, and David Gates. �Battle for the Soul of Hip-Hop.� Newsweek 9 Oct. 2000: 58-65. Proquest. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 20 Aug. 2003 <http://www.umi.com/pqdauto>.

Journal Article

Kadison, Richard, et al. "Getting an Edge - Use of Stimulants and Antidepressants in College." New England Journal of Medicine 353.11 (2005):1089-91. ProQuest Nursing Journals. Proquest. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 17 Mar. 2006 <http://www.umi.com/pqdauto>.

Articles from SIRS:

Magazine Article

Summerfeld, Julia. "Teen Weight-Loss Surgery: Is the Benefit Worth the Risk?" Seattle Times 16 July 2003: C3+. SIRS Researcher. SIRS. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 8 Aug. 2003 <http://sks.sirs.com>.

Government Report

"New Energy Market Outlook Raises Projected World Oil Price Path and Adds More Coal and Nuclear Power." EIA Reports 12 Dec 2005: n. pag. SIRS Government Reporter. SIRS. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. CA. 8 Aug. 2003 <http://sks.sirs.com>.

Article from Project Muse:

Bourdon, Jerome. "Some Sense of Time: Remembering Television." History & Memory 15.2 (2003):5-35. Project Muse. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 6 June 2004 <http://muse.jhu.edu>.

Article from Literature Resource Center:

Hart, Joyce. "Critical Essay on The Red Pony." Novels for Students. Ed. Marie Rose Napierkowski. Vol. 17. Detroit: Gale, 1998. 139-42. Literature Resource Center. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 27 June 2003 < http://galenet.galegroup.com>.

Article from Biography in Context:

"Margaret Higgins Sanger." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd ed. Farmington Hills , MI : Gale Research, 1998. Biography in Context. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 17 Oct. 2003 <http://galenet.galegroup.com>.

Articles from Opposing Viewpoints in Context:

Book Chapter

"Introduction to Internet Piracy." Internet Piracy . Ed. James D. Torr. Greenhaven Press, 2005. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 17 Mar. 2006 <http://galenet.galegroup.com>.

Periodical Article

Greenhouse, Linda. "Lively Debate as Justices Take on File Sharing." New York Times 30 Mar. 2005: C1. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 17 Apr. 2005 <http://galenet.galegroup.com>.

Article from Science Full Text Direct:

Carlson, Shawn. "The Pleasures of Pond Scum." Scientific American 8 Mar. 1998: 96-8. Science Full Text Direct. WilsonWeb. Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib.17 Apr. 2005 <http://hwwilsonweb.com>.

Article from CQ Researcher:

Jost, Kenneth, and Melissa J. Hipolit. "Blog Explosion." CQ Researcher 16.22 (2006): 505-28. CQ Researcher Online . Pasadena City College, Shatford Lib. 11 July 2006 <http://library.cqpress.com>.


Information from Web sites :

Format for Information from a Web Site: include the following items, if given, in this order:

Author (if given) [Last Name, First name]. "Title of Page or Posting" Name of Web Site [in italics or underlined] Date Published or Latest Update (if given). Name of Organization Sponsoring Web site [not advertising sponsor]. Access Date [day month year] <URL for the Web page or site>.

Example Citations For Web Pages:

DiCicco, John M. "Fuel Cell Vehicles: Technology, Market, and Policy Issues." Environmental Defense 1 Nov. 2001. Environmental Defense.org. 7 June 2004 <http://www.environmentaldefense.org/ documents/478_ACFAF.pdf>.

"What Can Be Done to Prevent Steroid Abuse?" NIDA Research Report Series – Anabolic Steroid Abuse. 21 Oct. 2002. National Institute on Drug Abuse. 7 June 2004 <http://www.nida.nih.gov/ ResearchReports/Steroids/anabolicsteroids4.html#prevent >.

Updated 8/2006 K. Goguen, Librarian and C. Cooper, Shatford Library, Pasadena City College.
NOTE: this is adapted for the Little, Brown Compact Handbook.