Skip to Main Content

Citation Guide

Get help and resources for citing in APA, MLA, and Chicago styles.

Basic Tips for Citing in MLA

  • Your bibliography should be titled: Works Cited
  • Put your sources in alphabetical order by the author's last name.
  • Citations in your Works Cited should be double-spaced, and all lines after the first line of each citation should be indented.
  • In-text citations in the body of your paper/presentation should include the author's name and the page from which you got the information in parentheses: (Smith 204)

Citations Using MLA

Basic format for a book:

Lastname, Firstname**. Title of Book: Subtitle of Book. Publisher, Year Published.

Everly, George S., Jr., and Jeffrey M. Lating. The Johns Hopkins Guide to Psychological First Aid. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2017.

Pollan, Michael. The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. Penguin Press, 2006.

Siebert, Lee, et al. Volcanoes of the World. Smithsonian Institution, 2010. 

Basic format for an eBook:

Author or Editor (if given). Title of Book: Subtitle of Book. e-book ed., Publisher, Publication date. Provider/Database/Container, URL (if available).

Bleeker, Maaike, editor. Anatomy Live: Performance and the Operating Theater. e-book ed., Amsterdam University Press, 2008. Ebook Central,

Basic format for a book chapter or work in an anthology:

Author of chapter. "Title of Chapter: Subtitle of Chapter." Title of Book: Subtitle of Book, edited by Firstname Lastname, Publisher, Publication date, pp. x-xx.

Vicioso, Sherezada. “The Caribbean, or the Feminine Face of Multiculturalism.” Daring to Write: Contemporary Narratives by Dominican Women, edited by Erika M. Martinez, University of Georgia Press, 2016, pp. 159-163.

*If there are 2 authors use this format: Lastname 1, Firstname 1, and Firstname 2 Lastname 2 (such as in the Everly example above).

**If there are three or more authors only put the primary author's name and follow it with "et al." (such as in the Siebert example above).

Basic format for periodicals:

Lastname, Firstname. "Title of Article: Subtitle of Article." Title of Periodical, vol. #, issue no. #, Publication Date, pages. Database Name*, DOI/URL. Date of Access**.


*Only put the name of the database that an article was found in if it was found in a database. If it was found in print or on the web omit this section.

**You only need to put a date of access if there is not a publication date.

From an academic/scholarly journal:

Overton, Tiffany L., et al. “Distracted Driving: Prevalence, Problems, and Prevention.” International Journal of Injury Control & Safety Promotion, vol. 22, no. 3, Sept. 2015, pp. 187–192. Academic Search Complete, doi:10.1080/17457300.2013.879482.

Smith, Gary, and Margaret Hwang Smith. "Like Mother, Like Daughter? An Economic Comparison of Immigrant Mothers and Their Daughters." International Migration, vol. 51, no. 2, 2013, pp. 181-190.


From a newspaper:

Healy, Melissa. "Opioid Addiction can be Overcome with Mindfulness, Study Suggests." Los Angeles Times, 17 Oct. 2019,

Martin, Naomi. "New Hampshire's Opioid Crisis Looms Over Marijuana Legalization Debate." Boston Globe, 5 Feb. 2019. ProQuest,

Max, Arthur. “Blair Begins Mission as Mideast Envoy.” The Boston Globe, 24 July 2007, p. A3.

From a popular magazine:

Ford, Anne. "It's Not Such a Small World After All: Introducing Older Adults to Virtual Reality." American Libraries, vol. 50, no. 3/4, Mar./Apr. 2019, pp. 22-23.

Gugliotta, Guy. “The Maya: Glory and Ruin.” National Geographic, vol. 212, no. 2, Aug. 2007, pp. 68‐73.

Toensmeier, Eric, and Dennis Garrity. “The Biomass Bottleneck.” Scientific American, vol. 323, no. 2, Aug. 2020, pp. 64-71. Academic Search Complete,

Basic format for web sources:

Author or Editor (if given). "Title of Webpage." Name of Website. Publisher or Sponsor of the website*, Date published or updated, URL/DOI/permalink. Accessed date**.

United States, Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. "Art Directors." Occupational Outlook Handbook, 8 Aug. 2018,

“The Most Haunted Places in Boston.” Ghosts & Gravestones, Accessed 8 Apr. 2020

Teitell, Beth. "Why We Turn into Different People When We Fly." Boston Globe, 9 July 2019,   why-turn-into-different-people-when-ly/sxf7XYIHGpm0FkfVct L26M/story.html.



Many web sources do not always provide all of the above information (such as an individual author, or a publication date). Check the pages under the "more help" tab, or, ask a librarian!

* If the Publisher is the same as the name of the website, omit it. See the Teitell example above

** You do not need to put a date of access if there is a date of publication on the webpage. If there is not a date of publication or date last updated, do not use the copyright date of the website. Use the date you accessed the webpage/website and place it at the end of your citation after the URL/DOI/Permalink. See "The Most Haunted" example above.

Basic format for Twitter:

@Twitter handle. "Insert the entire tweet here." Twitter, DD Mon. YYYY, Time of the post*, URL of tweet. 
*to find the time of posting hover over the date of the posting itself. 

@BostonGlobe. "Not all potholes are created equal. Some have cost the City of Boston thousands of dollars in payments." Twitter, 2 Apr. 2018, 4:59 a.m., 

Basic format for Facebook:

Author Last Name, First Name or Account Name. Description of Post*. Facebook, DD Mon. YYYY, Time of Post, URL.
*as Facebook posts can be lengthy, simply write your own short description of the post.

The Boston Globe. Eversource talks about ways to cut down on power outages. Facebook, 1 Apr. 2018, 10:15 p.m.,


For more help citing social media using MLA style please check out this page of the Purdue OWL website

Basic format for a webinar:

Lastname, Firstname of presenter. Title of Webinar*. Publisher or organization responsible for the webinar, Date of Webinar, URL (only necessary if watching a recorded webinar). Webinar**.

Gibson, Angela. MLA Style 101. Modern Language Association, 22 Aug. 2017. Webinar.

Gibson, Angela. MLA Style 101. Modern Language Association, 30 Aug. 2017,


*Note that the title of the webinar is styled without quotation marks or italics.

**It is optional to add the word "Webinar" after the date of a live webinar, or the URL of a pre-recorded webinar.

Basic format for PowerPoint presentations:

Lastname, Firstname. Title of PresentationName of Learning Management System, uploaded by Firstname Lastname*, Date uploaded, URL of the Learning Management System. PowerPoint presentation*.

Carson, Sandy. Introduction to Digital Humanities. Blackboard, uploaded by Carson, 20 Oct. 2019, PowerPoint presentation.


*It is optional to add the words "PowerPoint presentation" after the URL of the Learning Management System. 

Basic format for a work of art:

Artist or username. Title. Date the image was created. Medium. Museum, City. Database name or title of site,  URL. Date of access.


Chagall, Marc. Village Street. 1930s. Oil on canvas. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Museum of Fine Arts, Accessed 1 Oct. 2014.


An example from a database:

Chagall, Marc.The Yellow Room. 1911. Oil on canvas. Private collection. Artstor, Accessed 21 Sept. 2016.


Basic format for video(s):

Title of the video. Directed by Name Lastname, Distributor, Year.

Example of a film:

Demolition Man. Directed by Marco Brambilla, Warner Bros. Pictures, 1993.

Examples of a video uploaded on YouTube:

McGonigal, Jane. “Gaming and Productivity.” YouTube, uploaded by Big Think, 3 July 2012,


 "Kingston's Warning to the Jericho Appreciation Society is Heard Loud & Clear. AEW Dynamite, 4/27/22." YouTube, uploaded by All Elite Wrestling, 28 April 2022,

Example of a television episode on a streaming service:

"Eighteen Years Lost". Making a Murderer, season 1, episode 1, Synthesis Films, 2015. Netflix


The library offers FREE access to the citation manager NoodleTools. NoodleTools can help you keep track of and organize your citations, and automatically create bibliographies. Click on the image or link below for more information.


Noodletools login screen

Here are some other resources that you may find helpful in learning how to appropriately cite materials using the 8th edition of the Modern Language Association Handbook​. 

If you need more assistance, please ask a librarian.

In-Text Citations Using MLA

There are two components of an MLA style citation: the in-text citation (parenthetical or narrative), as well as the full reference list entry at the end of the paper. Both components provide the information necessary for the reader to locate and retrieve the source(s) used to inform a paper. Each cited source in the text of your paper (in-text citation), must also appear in the list of Works Cited. The following tabs contain examples of both parts of an MLA citation.

Complete Citation

Your complete citation should include the name of the author, date of publication, the title of the source, the title of the journal/website, identifying information such as volume, issue, and page numbers, and either a DOI or a URL if available. This gets alphabetized and placed in the References section at the end of your paper. 


Hanauer, Nick. "Education Isn't Enough." Atlantic, vol. 324, no. 1, July 2019, pp. 19-22. Academic Search Complete,

In-Text Citation

Your in-text citation contains the last name of the author, and the page number(s) that the information being used is from, and it is placed in the text of the sentence to which it relates. There are a few ways to do this, parenthetically, narratively, and using a direct quote. Parenthetical citations place the relevant information at the end of your sentence in parentheses, while narrative citations allow for the information to be conveyed in the body of your sentence. As for direct quotes, there are a variety of ways to use them in your paper. See below for examples of each.

Parenthetical Citation Example:

The percentage of Americans with high-school diplomas has increased from approximately 50% in 1970 to 90% today (Hanauer 20).

Narrative Citation Example:

Hanauer found that the percentage of Americans with high-school diplomas has increased from approximately 50% in 1970 to 90% today (20).

Direct Quote Example:

One way to increase the quality of public schools is to “pay people enough to afford dignified middle-class lives” (Hanauer 20).

Citing Multiple Works
When citing two or more sources in the same parentheses, separate each in-text citation with a semicolon. The order of the sources (alphabetical, by date, by level of importance) is up to you.  

Example: (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Everly and Lating 27; Shukman)

In-text citations can change based upon the number of authors that a source has. Follow the examples below for creating accurate in-text citations for your references.

Source with 1 Author

Works Cited

Hanauer, Nick. "Education Isn't Enough." Atlantic, vol. 324, no. 1, July 2019, pp. 19-22. Academic Search Complete,

In-Text Citation


(Hanauer 20)


Hanauer (20)

Direct Quote

(Hanauer 20)

Source with 2 Authors

Works Cited

Everly, George S., Jr., and Jeffrey M. Lating. The Johns Hopkins Guide to Psychological First Aid. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2017

In-Text Citation


(Everly and Lating 86)


Everly and Lating (86)

Direct Quote

(Everly and Lating 86)

Source with 3+ Authors

Works Cited

Schwartz, Joel, et al. “Estimating Causal Effects of Local Air Pollution on Daily Deaths: Effect of Low Levels.” Environmental Health Perspectives, 2017, vol. 125, no. 1, pp. 23–29,

In-Text Citation


(Schwartz et al. 25)


Schwartz et al. (25)

Direct Quote

(Schwartz et al. 25)

Some sources will not have individual authors, but rather group authors. In these instances, you will still need to cite the item as you would any source with an author. Follow the example below for an accurate in-text citation of a source with a group author.

It is important to note that you should always define the abbreviation for a group author before using it. Thereafter, it is appropriate to use the abbreviation for all mentions of the group in the text.

Source with a group author

Works Cited

Central Intelligence Agency. “Central America: Haiti.” The World Factbook, 16 July 2021, the-world-factbook/geos/aa.html.

First In-Text Citation Parenthetical
(Central Intelligence Agency [CIA])
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Direct Quote
(Central Intelligence Agency [CIA])
Subsequent In-Text Citations Parenthetical
Direct Quote

At times you will come across sources where there is no author listed. If this happens, use a shortened version of the title in your in-text citation.

Source with no author
Reference List

"Charles Hull." National Inventors Hall of Fame, Accessed 12 Sept. 2020.

“The Most Haunted Places in Boston.” Ghosts & Gravestones, Accessed 8 Apr. 2020.

"Where Angels no Longer Fear to Tread." The Economist, vol. 386, no. 8572, 19 Mar. 2008, pp. 89-92.

In-Text Citation

("Charles Hull")
("Most Haunted")
(“Where Angels” 90)

"Charles Hull"
"Most Haunted"
“Where Angels” (90)

Direct Quote
("Charles Hull")
("Most Haunted")
(“Where Angels” 90)



There are different ways to format quotes when they are used in your paper. Follow the guidelines below for proper formatting. For more detailed information on how to format specific types of quotes, see section 1.3 of the MLA Handbook 8th edition.

Short Quotations (Fewer than 4 lines)

Include the quotation in the regular text of your paper. Be sure to use quotation marks and add an in-text citation with a page number.


For Charles Dickens, the eighteenth century was both "the best of times" and "the worst of times" (35). 

Block Quotations (4 or more lines)

If a quote runs for four or more lines, treat it as a block quote. Start the block quote on its own line and indent the entire quote 0.5” from the left margin, be sure that it is also double-spaced, with no extra spaces before or after it. Do not use quotation marks for block quotes.

Use a parenthetical citation after the closing punctuation for the sentence or use the author in a narrative introduction before the quote. If you choose to use a narrative introduction, be sure to include the page number of the quote after the final punctuation.

Example 1:

Hanauer discusses the many ways in which the American education system has seemingly failed its people and led to significant income inequality. He explains that the problem is far greater than just that of the 

"skills gap"—the notion that decades of wage stagnation are largely a consequence of workers not having the education and skills to fill new high-wage jobs. If we improve our public schools, the thinking goes, and we increase the percentage of students attaining higher levels of education, particularly in the STEM subjects—science, technology, engineering, and math—the skills gap will shrink, wages will rise, and income inequality will fall. (20)

Example 2:

When people think of the word "pirate" today they probably conjure up images of shipwrecks on beaches, cracked bottles of rum, perhaps of Johnny Depp. They also probably think that piracy on the ocean is a thing of the past, however, piracy on the open seas, especially the Atlantic Ocean is still booming even today.  

According to the Office of Naval Intelligence’s “Weekly Piracy Reports” 72 reported incidents of piracy and armed robbery at sea occurred in the GoG region this year as of July 9, 2019. Attacks, kidnappings for ransom (KFR), and boardings to steal valuables from the ships and crews are the most common types of incidents with approximately 75 percent of all incidents taking place off Nigeria. During the first six months of 2019, there were 15 kidnapping and 3 hijackings in the GoG. (Central Intelligence Agency)


Tables in MLA 9 ed. style should follow the format depicted below. In this example, the author cites a table from a primary source. Therefore, there should be a note below the table that states where the tables have been adapted from.  There should also be a note with a description of the table.

MLA format table


MLA classified illustrations and graphics as figures. The citation for the figure should follow the example below.  Notice that the description starts with “Fig. [number],” followed by the citation.

Example of an MLA Citation for an illustration. The illustration is three drawings the types of leg fractures

To cite this LibGuide use the following templates:

APA: Northern Essex Community College Library. (Date updated). Title of page. Title of LibGuide. URL

MLA: Northern Essex Community College Library. "Title of Page." Title of LibGuide, Date updated, URL.