MLA Formatting & Style Guide
Here are some common features you should try and find before citing electronic sources in MLA style. Not every Web page will provide all of the following information. However, collect as much of the following information as possible both for your citations and for your research notes:
Use the following format (including punctuation):
Author. Title. Title of container (self contained if book), Other contributors (translators or editors), Version (edition), Number (vol. and/or no.), Publisher, Publication Date, Location (pages, paragraphs and/or URL, DOI or permalink). 2nd container’s title, Other contributors, Version, Number, Publisher, Publication date, Location, Date of Access (if applicable).
It is a good idea to list your date of access because web postings are often updated, and information available on one date may no longer be available later. When using the URL, be sure to include the complete address for the site except for the https://.
Editor, author, or compiler name (if available). Name of Site. Version number, Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher), date of resource creation (if available), URL, DOI or permalink. Date of access (if applicable).
The Purdue OWL Family of Sites. The Writing Lab and OWL at Purdue and Purdue U, 2008, owl.english.purdue.edu/owl. Accessed 23 Apr. 2008.
Felluga, Dino. Guide to Literary and Critical Theory. Purdue U, 28 Nov. 2003, www.cla.purdue.edu/english/theory/. Accessed 10 May 2006.
From Purdue OWL, for more information visit Purdue OWL's Works Cited Page: Basic Format webpage
Citation Tips & Reminders
Common terms in the works-cited list like editor, edited by, translator, and review are not abbreviated.
When a source has three (3) or more authors, only the first one shown in the source is normally given. It is followed by et al.
Page numbers in the works cited list (but not in in-text citations) are preceded by p. or pp.
For books citations, the city of publication is not necessary, except in special situations.
Jacobs, Alan. The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction. Oxford UP, 2011.
Issues of scholarly journals are written “vol. 64, no. 1” rather than “64.1”
If an issue of a scholarly journal is dated with a month or season, the month or season is always cited along with the year.
Kincaid, Jamaica. “In History.” Callaloo, vol. 24, no. 2, Spring 2001, pp. 620-26.
The URL (without https:// or https://) is included for a web source without angle brackets.
The citing of DOIs (digital object identifiers) is encouraged.
Citing the date when an online work was consulted is optional.
Placeholders for unknown information like n.d. (“no date”) are not used. If facts missing from work are available in a reliable external resource, they are cited in square brackets. Otherwise, they are simply omitted.
When an organization is both author and publisher of a work, the organization’s name is given only once, usually as the publisher. No author is stated.
The medium of publication not stated, except when it is needed for clarity.
When the title of a periodical (journal, magazine) begins with an article (A, An, The), the article is treated as part of the title. The article name is italicized and its first letter capitalized, for example, The New York Times.