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MLA 9th Edition Style Guide

MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (8th ed.).

MLA Style

Modern Language Association (MLA) Provides a “universal set of guidelines” for citing sources across all format types and is commonly used iin English Studies, Language and Literature, Literary Criticism, Comparative Literature, and Cultural studies.  

Citing sources and creating a Bibliography:

  • Gives credit to the author(s)
  • Illustrates your ability to locate & evaluate appropriate sources
  • Provides evidence for the arguments and conclusions in your paper
  • Prevents plagiarism and copyright infringement

Useful Links

  • MLA Style Center - Use this site to get help with formatting your paper and citing sources. 
  • Purdue OWL MLA Format - Use this website for more detail information on how to format your research paper or cite a source. 
  • In-Text Citation - Consult with this guide to ensure you correctly cite your sources in your paper. 
  • MLA Tutorial - A simplified guide to MLA style. 
  • MLA Format: The Basics (Video) - Learn more about the basics of MLA format by watching the very short 3 minutes video. 


Print Book with One Author: Author’s Last Name (comma) Author’s First Name (period) Title of Container (Book) (italicized or underlined) (period) Publisher’s Name (comma) Year of Publication (period) 

         Smith, John. How I Survived High School. Funny Press, 2015.

Ebook with One Author: Author’s Last Name (comma) Author’s First Name (period) Title of Container 1 (Book) (italicized or underlined) (period) Publisher’s Name (comma) Year of Publication (period) Title of Container 2 (Database) (italicized or underlined) (comma) Location (URL) (period)

Smith, John. How I Survived Getting Married. Funniest Press, 2018. eBook Academic Collection,

In-Text Citation (From Columbia College Guide):
In MLA, in-text citations are inserted in the body of your research paper to briefly document the source of your information. Brief in-text citations point the reader to more complete information in the Works Cited list at the end of the paper.

Number of Authors/Editors Format of In-Text Citation
One author

 (Author's Last Name Page Number)

 Example: (Case 57)

Two authors

 (Author's Last Name and Author's Last Name Page Number)

 Example: (Case and Daristotle 57)

Three or more authors

 (Author's Last Name et al. Page Number)

 Example: (Case et al. 57)


Available at the WLAC Library Reference Desk