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MLA Citation

How to cite sources in the 8th edition of MLA style


Welcome to the Beeghly Library MLA Style Research GuideCover of the 8th edition of the MLA Handbook

Here you'll find information about and examples of citing various types of sources, such as books, articles,  and web sources in your works cited page, as well information about in-text citations. The topics covered in this guide refer to the 8th edition of the MLA Handbook. This guide is designed to provide a basic introduction. For more in-depth citation questions and other aspects of MLA style, consult the handbook.

To navigate this MLA guide, click on the tab above that corresponds to the material you are interested in citing in MLA format. 

If your instructor is requiring the 7th edition of MLA, see our guide for citing in MLA 7th edition

The Core Elements

In order to be more flexible, the 8th edition of MLA style is built around nine core elements that should be included in a full citation and can be combined to create a citation for any source. Any element that does not exist for the source being cited should be omitted. 

The core elements, and the punctuation that should follow them, are:

  1. Author.
  2. Title of source.
  3. Title of container,
  4. Other contributors,
  5. Version,
  6. Number,
  7. Publisher,
  8. Publication date,
  9. Location.

Note: the final element should always be followed with a period.

Hanging Indents

The Works Cited page of a paper in MLA style require hanging indents, where the first line of each citation is not indented and every line after is. The examples in this guide will not show the hanging indents because the software used to create it cannot support them. Remember to include them in your paper. 

Use the links below to learn how to create a hanging indent in Microsoft Word and Google Docs.