Skip to main content

Cite MLA Style

How to cite according to the 8th edition of the Modern Language Association.

Create a Hanging indent for Your Citation

It's easier done than said:

See instructions for your phone or smaller devices

  1. Place your cursor at the beginning of your citation, and highlight it.
  2. Right click your mouse
  3. Select Paragraph from the resulting pop up menu
  4. Under Indentation, use the Special pull-down menu to select hanging
  5. Use the By menu to select 0.5"

For multiple Citations in a References, Works Cited or Bibliography Page

  1. Once you've applied the hanging indent using the technique above, hit enter after your citation.
  2. If you are typing your citation it should keep the same formatting. If you are pasting in your citation, right click when you paste and select the paste as text option (looks like a A on clipboard) and Word will automatically apply all the formatting you've already done, including hanging indent, spacing, font, etc. Alternatively you could wait until all your citations are on your bib, highlight them all at once, then use the 5 steps as listed above.

Paste the text

Create a Hanging indent on your phone

You might not see teh options on your phone. The key is to rotate the screen to landscape mode so you can see the available options (see images below to see the difference). Here are the steps:

  1. Once you have typed in the text you want for your block quote, tap enter/return before the first word of the quote and after the last word of the quote.
  2. Highlight the text that you want to indent.
  3. Rotate your device so that you're viewing it in landscape mode.
  4. Choose the indent option and you're good. If for some reason you can' do that, you'll have to tap the dot options that represent more menu options, bu that will take more steps.

View in Landscape Mode

 

View In Portrait Mode

Automatically Alphabetize Your Citations

In your Word document, highlight your list. In the ribbon, go to the Paragraph group and select AZ Sort. In the dialog box, under Sort by, Paragraphs and Text, select Ascending to sort alphabetically, A-Z and hit OK. It's that simple!

More Citation Tips

No Author

If there is no author for your article, book, or Internet source, start the citation with the title of your resource.

More than one Author

Cite names in the same order listed on the article or title page of the book. Reverse only the name of the first author, add a comma, and give the other name or names in normal form (Park, Kathryn, and Erika Sollosi). Place a period after the last name. If there are more than three authors, you may name only the first and add et al. (Park, Kathryn, et al.)

n. pag.

For articles that appear in an online-only format or in databases that do not provide a page number, use the abbreviation n. pag. for no pagination.

No URL Needed, Unless…

“You should include a URL as supplementary information only when the reader probably cannot locate the source without it or when your instructor requires it” (MLA Handbook, 7th edition, 5.6.1). You will not need to include a URL with library database sources.

Months

According to MLA Style, you should “spell out the names of the months in the text but abbreviate the list of works cited…” This chart shows the proper use of each month for your works cited page:

Formatting Your Paper Tips

These tips can help you format your paper correctly. Get more details from MLA Style Center Formatting a Research Paper

Margins

Page margins should be set 1 inch on top, bottom, left and right.

Font

Use an easily readable font such as Times New Roman in a standard size, such as 12.

Double Space

Set your word processor to double-space the entire research paper, including quotations, notes, and the list of works cited. Leave one space after a period or other concluding punctuation mark, unless your instructor prefers two spaces.

Hanging Indent

Use a hanging indent in your word processor to create the proper spacing (0.5”) for your works cited page.

MLA Sample Papers

Your Formatting Questions Answered by the Modern Language Association (MLA)

Did you know? You can search MLA frequently asked questions or ask the Modern Language Association, the creators of MLA Style, your own question

Here are the most recent questions (and answers!) below:

Loading ...