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Citing Sources: MLA

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General MLA Style Information

For URLs do not include https:// at the beginning of the URL.
When available, use the permalink for the URL (In EBSCO databases, click "Permalink" in the right sidebar under "Tools.")
Include the URL (permalink) or DOI (opens new windowDigital Object Identifier).
Accessed date is not required, but may be provided if you wish. Check with your professor's guidelines.

Modern Language Association Style Manual


Digital Object Identifiers, or DOIs, are persistent links used in scientific and scholarly publishing to provide a permanent electronic address to avoid the problems of broken, outdated or changed links. opens new windowThe DOI System provides a means for managing information in changing digital environments.

A DOI consists of digits and letters that lead to the source location. Journal articles are often assigned DOIs. So, for MLA documentation, if a source has a DOI,use it instead of the persistent link (or URL).

Websites for Additional MLA Resources

MLA Style Center (Modern Language Association)

To organize key elements in your citation, use the opens newwindowopens new windowMLA opens new window interactive Practice Template from MLA Handbook (8th ed.), PDF, by the Modern Language Association (,

- opens new windowHow to cite an online video?
- opens new windowUsing MLA Format
- opens new windowWorks Cited: A Quick guide
- FAQs, MLA Style Center

MLA In-Text Citations

MLA format for in-text citations follows the author-page method. The author's last name may be included with the page number(s) in parenthesis following the quote or paraphrase, or used in the sentence with the page number(s) following in parenthesis.

Smith noted that fake news... (27).
(Smith 27)

When page numbers are not fixed (the numbers are not the same in all formats) or not available, use a label identifying abbreviation for the number reference. Use a comma to separate the author from a reference that is not a page number.

(Smith, par. 6) paragraph 6
(Smith, pars. 6-7) paragraphs 6 and 7
(Smith, ch. 4) chapter 4

MLA Handbook, 8th edition (pp. 36, 123-127) - Call #opens new windowLB2369.G53 2016
The Little, Brown Handbook, 13th edition (pp. 638-640) - Call #opens new windowPE1112.F644 2016.

MLA Style Examples for Song Lyrics and TV Scripts

The examples below show elements to include in the citation. Use the print style manual and your professor's requirement to correctly format the citations.

SONG LYRICS (from an album or CD)
Writer / lyricist last name, first name. “Song title.” Recording date. Album name. Recording label. Year of release.

Child, Desmond, Jon Bon Jovi, and Richard Sambora. “Livin’ on a Prayer.” Slippery When Wet. Island/Mercury, 2017.

SONG LYRICS (from a website)
Writer / lyricist last name, first name. “Song title.”Website name,URL

Child, Desmond, Jon Bon Jovi, and Richard Sambora. “Livin’ on a Prayer.” SongLyrics,

Writer. "Title of source." Title of container (in italics), series, episode, Title of second container (in italics), publisher, location.

Litt, Davidand Lee Aronsohn. "The Luminious Fish Effect." Big Bang Theory, story by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady, series 01, episode 04. Big Bang Theory Transcripts, WordPress,

"The Big Bran Hypothesis." Big Bang Theory, series 01, episode 02, 5 Oct. 2007. Big Bang Theory Transcripts, Forever Dreaming,