Above is the general format for a header in MLA, but here's a more specific example to put things in perspective:. You should also include your last name and the page number in the upper-right hand corner of your document. MLA in-text reference formatting is done via parenthetical citations and is the same regardless of container e. Citations should go at the end of a sentence before the period, whether you are paraphrasing or citing a direct quote. The information in the in-text parenthetical citation indicates who the author is and where the quote comes from: King 3.
The page number, on the other hand, must. If referencing only one work throughout your essay, you can simply use numeric references if the author of your source material and the source material itself is the same throughout. Based on our example, that means if you were writing an essay solely about It , you could reference Stephen King by name just once and then use numbers to reference specific pages thereafter.
However, if you are referencing multiple works by the same author e. It and Carrie by King or multiple works by various authors e. That way there is no confusion about which quotation s came from which source material. An MLA-formatted Works Cited page houses all of your reference material that you used throughout your essay. Although there are many different types of source containers from which you may be quoting, we are highlighting the most common: books and periodicals, which include print and web articles, with examples of properly-formatted citations should look like.
For each container listed below, you will find a general formula for citing the source in your Works Cited page along with an example to put it in perspective. This means that if you absolutely cannot find the city in which a book was published this applies to books written before only , then it is not necessary to include that information as long as all other information provided is formatted correctly and included. Last Name, First Name. Title of Book. Publisher, Publication Date. This format will only be used if two authors are listed as contributors for one book. Kansaker, Tej Ratna, and Mark Turin, editors.
When your focus is on the translated text rather than the original, treat the translator as the author. Include the name of the original creator after the title, preceded by the word By:.
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Rojas, Carlos, translator. The Four Books. By Yan Lianke.
If a corporation is the author of the text, include the full name of the corporation:. Again, your attention to detail and the professional presentation of your work are aspects of learning to write in an academic setting. Links to sample MLA papers are located at the end of this section. Recognize that each has its advantages and preferred use in fields and disciplines. Learn to write and reference in both styles with proficiency. You never get a second chance to make a first impression, and your title block not a separate title page; just a section at the top of the first page makes an impression on the reader.
If correctly formatted with each element of information in its proper place, form, and format, it says to the reader that you mean business, that you are a professional, and that you take your work seriously, so it should, in turn, be seriously considered. Your title block in MLA style contributes to your credibility. Remember that your writing represents you in your absence, and the title block is the tailored suit or outfit that represents you best.
That said, sometimes a separate title page is necessary, but it is best both to know how to properly format a title block or page in MLA style and to ask your instructor if it is included as part of the assignment. Title of Paper. Make sure you indent five spaces from the left margin. We use paragraphs to express single ideas or topics that reinforce our central purpose or thesis statement. Paragraphs include topic sentences, supporting sentences, and conclusion or transitional sentences that link paragraphs together to support the main focus of the essay.
Place tables and illustrations as close as possible to the text they reinforce or complement. As we can see in Table This example demonstrates that the words that you write and the tables, figures, illustrations, or images that you include should be next to each other in your paper. You must cite your sources as you use them. In the same way that a table or figure should be located right next to the sentence that discusses it see the previous example , parenthetical citations, or citations enclosed in parenthesis that appear in the text, are required.
You need to cite all your information. If someone else wrote it, said it, drew it, demonstrated it, or otherwise expressed it, you need to cite it. The exception to this statement is common, widespread knowledge. MLA is a style and cannot be copyrighted because it is a style, but the seventh edition of the MLA Handbook can be copyright protected. If you reference a specific page in that handbook, you need to indicate it.
If you write about a general MLA style issue that is commonly covered or addressed in multiple sources, you do not.
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When in doubt, reference the specific resource you used to write your essay. Your in-text, or parenthetical, citations should do the following:. After the body of your paper comes the works cited page. It features the reference sources used in your essay. List the sources alphabetically by last name, or list them by title if the author is not known as is often the case of web-based articles. You will find links to examples of the works cited page in several of the sample MLA essays at the end of this section. You may find it helpful to use online applications that quickly, easily, and at no cost convert your citations to MLA format.
You may find that online applications can quickly, easily, and at no cost convert your citations to MLA format. There are several websites and applications available free or as a free trial that will allow you to input the information and will produce a correct citation in the style of your choice. Consider these two sites:. Hint: You may need access to the Internet to find any missing information required to correctly cite in MLA style. Arizona State University Libraries offers an excellent resource with clear examples. You may wish to conduct this activity in two sessions—one to edit the body of the paper and one to edit the references section.
Check for the following:. As electronic media continually change, guidelines for citing electronic sources are continually updated. Identify three new or emerging forms of electronic media not listed in this text—for instance, virtual communities, such as Second Life, or social networking sites, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and MySpace. Answer the following questions:. Previous Chapter. Table of Contents. Next Chapter.
Apply general APA style and formatting conventions in a research paper. General Formatting Guidelines This chapter provides detailed guidelines for using the citation and formatting conventions developed by the American Psychological Association, or APA.
IN-TEXT CITATIONS FOR A...
These are the major components of an APA-style paper: Title page Abstract Body, which includes the following: Headings and, if necessary, subheadings to organize the content In-text citations of research sources References page All these components must be saved in one document, not as separate documents. Abstract The next page of your paper provides an abstract A concise one hundred to one hundred fifty words summary of research findings that appears at the beginning of an APA-style paper.
Exercise 1 Write an abstract summarizing your paper. Tip Depending on your field of study, you may sometimes write research papers that present extensive primary research, such as your own experiment or survey. Margins, Pagination, and Headings APA style requirements also address specific formatting concerns, such as margins, pagination, and heading styles, within the body of the paper.
Use these general guidelines to format the paper: Set the top, bottom, and side margins of your paper at 1 inch. Use double-spaced text throughout your paper.
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Use a standard font, such as Times New Roman or Arial, in a legible size to point. Use continuous pagination throughout the paper, including the title page and the references section. Page numbers appear flush right within your header.
Section headings and subsection headings within the body of your paper use different types of formatting depending on the level of information you are presenting. Exercise 2 Begin formatting the final draft of your paper according to APA guidelines. Include the following: Your title page The abstract you created in Note The following heading styles used in APA formatting are listed in order of greatest to least importance: Section headings use centered, boldface type. Headings use title case, with important words in the heading capitalized.
Subsection headings use left-aligned, boldface type. Headings use title case. The third level uses left-aligned, indented, boldface type.