Works Cited Instructions (MLA)
The following examples are based on the current guidelines found in MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, seventh edition, © 2009.
Alphabetize by the author’s last name, or, if the author is unknown, by the title. Double-space the entire list, both between and within entries. Use a hanging indent of .5 inch (the examples below do NOT show the hanging indent).
A book by a single author
Wilson, Frank R. The Hand: How Its Use Shapes the Brain, Language, and Human Culture. New York: Pantheon, 1998. Print.
An anthology or a compilation
Feldman, Paula R., ed. British Women Poets of the Romantic Era. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1997. Print.
A work in an anthology
Opie, Amelia. “An Evening Walk at Cromer.” British Women Poets of the Romantic Era. Ed. Paula R. Feldman. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1997. 472-82. Print.
Two or more books by the same author
Frye, Northrop. Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1957. Print.
---. The Double Vision: Language and Meaning in Religion. Toronto: U of Toronto P, 1962. Print.
A book by two or more authors
Butler, Sharon, and Deena Slater. Analyzing Adverse Reactions. London: Cassell, 2000. Print.
Marquart, James W., Sheldon Ekland Olson, and Jonathan R. Sorensen. The Rope, the Chair, and the Needle: Capital Punishment in Texas, 1923 – 1990. Austin: U of Texas P, 1994. Print.
A book by a corporate author
National Research Council. China and Global Change: Opportunities for Collaboration. Washington: National Academy, 1992. Print.
Unsigned encyclopedia entry (author’s name does not appear at the end of the entry)
“Disease.” Academic American Encyclopedia. 2006 ed. Print.
Signed encyclopedia entry (author’s name does appear at the end of the entry)
Laffery, Richard. “Space.” Encyclopedia Americana. 2006 ed. Print.
A multivolume work
If you are using only one volume of a multivolume work, state the number of the volume on your works cited page (i.e., "Vol. 2") and only give publication information for that volume. For your in-text citations, you can just give the page numbers where the information is found, there is no need to state the volume number because you are only using one volume in the collection.
Wellek, Rene. A History of Modern Criticism, 1750 - 1950. Vol. 5. New Haven: Yale UP, 1986. Print.
If you are using more than one volume in the multivolume work, cite the total number of volumes in the collection (i.e., "5 vols."). You need to specify which volume you are using when you do your in-text citation. So for the example below, your in-text citation might look like (Sadie 4: 560-563), where "4" is the volume number that you are citing and "560-563" are the page numbers.
Sadie, Stanley, ed. The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. 2nd ed. 29 vols. New York: Grove, 2001. Print.
Newspaper article (below, “B7+” indicates that the article began on page 7 of section B and continued onto another page. If the article was printed only on page B7, there would be no plus sign).
Jeromack, Paul. “This Once, a David of the Art World Does Goliath a Favor.” New York Times 13 July 2002: B7+. Print.
Electronic publications include 9 elements:
- Name of the author, compiler, director, editor, narrator, performer, or translator of the work.
- Title of the work (italicized if the work is independent; in roman type and quotation marks if the work is part of a larger work).
- Title of the overall website (italicized), if distinct from #2.
- Version or edition used.
- Publisher or sponsor of the site; if not available, use N.p.
- Date of publication (day, month, and year, as available): if nothing is available, use n.d.
- Medium of publication (Web).
- Date of access (day, month, and year).
- *Optional* URL, in angle brackets – include this if required by your teacher, or for your own personal preference. <these are angle brackets>
If you cannot find some of this information, cite what is available.
Quade, Alex. “Elite Team Rescues Troops behind Enemy Lines.” CNN.com. Cable News Network, 19 Mar. 2007. Web. 15 May 2008.
An article in an electronic database
**often these can be found in the “citation view” or “citation link” on the database**
Include the volume and issue number. Here’s how
Dawson, Lorne L. “Anti-modernism, modernism, and postmodernism: struggling with the cultural significance of new religious movements.” Sociology of Religion 22 June 1998: 326 - 334. eLibrary. Web. 20 Feb. 2009.
For more examples and instruction, please visit the OWL at Purdue MLA page:
We have a copy of the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers in the nonfiction collection at the Falmouth High School Library. The call number is 808 MLA.