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MLA Overview


MLA Overview. MLA and APA are two common styles used for formatting papers and properly citing sources. Modern Language Association (MLA) Style used most often in ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: MLA Overview

MLA Overview
  • Owens Community College

Title Page - MLA
MLA does NOT require a separate title page!
  • Instead, on the first page of the essay include
  • A running header with your last name and page
  • Your name, professors name, course, and date
  • Assignment title centered over the essay

MLA Works Cited Page
  • The Works Cited page
  • Comes at the end of the document lists every
    source (in a particular format) that was
    consulted for the essay
  • Is meant to provide enough information so that
    anyone who wanted to find the that source could
    track it down
  • Basic information for every source, by order of
    significance, includes but is not limited to
  • The author
  • Title of the work you used
  • Publisher location and company
  • Year of publication
  • Format (Print or Web)
  • Specifics will vary by source type! You must
    consult your handbook (or other resources) for
    help citing various sources correctly.

Example for a bookMLA Works Cited Examples
  • Single author
  • Gleick, James. Chaos Making a New Science. New
    York Penguin Books, 1987. Print.
  • Authors last name, first name. Title. Publisher
    location Publisher, year published. Format.
  • Book with multiple authors
  • Gleick, James and Debra Smith. Chaos Making a
    New Science. New York Penguin Books, 1987.
  • Cite up to 3 authors (only use the last name,
    first name format for the first author), then the
    publisher info, date, page numbers, and format.
  • For a book with 4 or more authors, cite the first
    author as usual and follow it with et al.
    (which means and others) to indicate the rest of
    the authors

MLA Works Cited Examples
  • No author?
  • Cooler Heads Coalition, 2007.
    Web. 24 May 2009.
  • Cite it as usual, but start with the title since
    there is no author
  • Particular essay or story from a collection
  • McCovey, Chester. "The Front Porch." The
    Composition of Everyday Life. Ed. John Mauk and
    John Metz. Boston Wadsworth, 2010. 105-107.
  • Cite the author(s) of the specific source first,
    then the story/essay title, then credit the book
    in which you found it, the editor(s) of the book,
    then the usual information for a book.

MLA Works Cited Examples
  • Electronic source
  • Vargas, Paul. "How to Make Vegetarian Chili." Web. 10 May 2009 lthttp//
  • Cite like other sources, but also include Web as
    the format followed by the date you accessed the
  • Including the web address is optional

MLA Work Cited Page Database
  • Citing a library database differs from other
    online sources because the database is not
    publicly accessible (i.e., someone is paying for
    the service).
  • Therefore, you have to also cite
  • The database
  • The company that owns the database
  • The location from which you accessed it

Work Cited Page Database
  • For instance, if you used Academic Search Premier
    from the Owens Library to find Pat Shipmans
    article The Woof at the Door published in
    American Scientist, the correct citation would
    look like this
  • Shipman, Pat "The Woof at the Door." American
    Scientist 97.4 (2009) 286-289. Academic Search
    Premier. EBSCO. Owens Community Coll. Lib. Web.
    12 Oct. 2009.

Correct Formatting for Titles
  • Examples
  • The New York Times
  • The Atlantic Monthly
  • The Composition of Everyday Life
  • What Is Education?
  • Cruelty, Civility, and Other Weighty Matters
  • Italicize titles of long works like books,
    newspapers, magazines, and journals. a
  • Use quotation marks for short stories, poems,
    essays, or articles. a

Works Cited Layout
  • Center Works Cited at the top of the page in
    normal font
  • Double space
  • Alphabetize the list of sources
  • Use a hanging indent
  • Do not number or bullet entries

Parenthetical Citation Examples
  • For quoted or paraphrased material use
  • (authors last name and page )
  • Example The advisory board made no mention of
    the report, (Gonzalez 12).
  • Tip If you mention the author as you introduce
    the quote, his or her name may be omitted in the
    parenthetical citation.
  • Example According to Dr. Gonzalez, The advisory
    board made no mention of the report (12).

Parenthetical Citation Examples
  • To give credit for a summary of someone elses
    ideas use
  • (authors last name) OR a reference to the author
    in the writing
  • Example Men often use speech to establish social
    position while women talk in order to express
    emotion (Tannen). OR-
  • Tannen asserts that men often use speech to
    establish social position while women talk in
    order to express emotion.

Always Remember
  • When using an exact quote, any exact quotes MUST
    be in quotation marks.
  • When paraphrasing, you must rephrase the material
    in your own words to avoid plagiarism.
  • When you re-word something, quotation marks are
    not necessary, but a citation is still necessary.
  • Even when using ideas you got from someone elses
    work, you must credit them!

When should I cite? If in doubt, ask
Is it my idea?
Do not cite
Is it common knowledge?
Cite it!
or else
Another suspected plagiarist is hauled away.
Useful Websites Sources
  • Interactive MLA Tutorial
  • Commercial citation tools such as
  • Landmark Tool at http//
  • Put all the info in it spits out your citation
  • The catch is, you still need to know where to get
    the info and when to use citations.
  • Knight Citation
  • Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)