Are you a humanities student in need of expert guidance for MLA-style citations? In addition to your in-text citations, it is crucial that you know how to create a list of comprehensive cited works that provide detailed information about each source referenced in your text. This article will serve as your comprehensive guide, explaining the essential elements and order of an MLA reference entry and demonstrating how to format your cited works page (e.g. in Google Docs). If you are primarily seeking assistance with formatting, feel free to skip ahead to the relevant section.
Examples of MLA Works Cited Entry
To give you an impression of the required information and illustrate the typical MLA works cited format in difference to other popular citation styles such as Harvard, APA, or Chicago, let’s start with a practical example:
Author: Smith, John
Title: The Art of Writing
Publisher: ABC Publishing
Publication Year: 2022
In this case, the MLA works cited entry would be:
Smith, John. The Art of Writing. ABC Publishing, 2022.
By looking up the given information, You certainly noticed that this entry follows the MLA guidelines for formatting a book citation. The author’s name is listed with the last name first, followed by the first name. The title of the book is italicized, and the publisher is mentioned after the title. The publication year is included at the end of the entry.
Note: This is just one example, and the specific formatting varies depending on the type of source being cited (e.g., book, journal article, website). Make sure to collect all the relevant information n a source already when conducting your search for relevant literature and setting up your Literature Review. Further, the correct format and information needed for your cited entry should match the requirements of your university or publisher. Note: Always refer to the MLA guidelines for the correct format for each source type.
To provide an alternative example, let’s consider a different source:
Author: Johnson, Emily
Title of Article: The Impact of Climate Change on Biodiversity
Title of Journal: Environmental Studies Review
Page Range: 57-73
In this case, the MLA works cited entry would be:
Johnson, Emily. “The Impact of Climate Change on Biodiversity.” Environmental Studies Review, vol. 24, no. 2, 2023, pp. 57-73.
As gets clear from the cited information, this entry follows the MLA guidelines for formatting a journal paper. Here, the author’s name is listed with the last name first, followed by the first name. The title of the article is enclosed in quotation marks, while the title of the journal is italicized. The volume and issue numbers are included, followed by the publication year. Finally, the specific page range of the article within the journal is provided.
Source Entry Components and Essentials
As your academic support, I am here to help you achieve your scholarly goals! Let’s dive into the essentials of each source entry and get clear, what you should always keep in mind.
Relevant Details for your MLA-Citation
Remember to begin with the name of the author or creator. The first author’s name should be inverted, with the last name appearing first, followed by the first name. However, if there is a second author, their name should not be inverted. In cases where a source has three or more authors, only the first author is listed, followed by “et al.“
Remember to include the full title of the source, including any subtitles, using title case. The formatting of the title depends on the type of source. Self-contained sources, such as books, movies, and websites, should be italicized, while sources that are part of a larger whole, like a book chapter, a web page, or a journal article, should be enclosed in quotation marks. A container refers to the larger work that encompasses the cited source. For instance, a chapter is part of a book, a web page is part of a website, and an article is part of a journal. Don´t forget to italicize the container, unless the source itself is self-contained, like a book.
How to deal with Publishers, Contributors and Editions
If there are any other contributors involved, such as translators or directors, include their names immediately after the container title. Omit this element if there are no other contributors. In cases where multiple versions of a source exist, make sure to specify the version you utilized, such as a second-edition book or a director’s cut of a movie. Additionally, certain sources like journal articles, magazines, etc. are often numbered, so include this element if applicable. The publisher is responsible for producing and distributing the source and thus typically mentioned for book publishers (e.g., Oxford University Press or Cambridge University Press) or movie production companies (e.g., Warner Brothers).
Always include the publication year, and if you know the month and day, include that information as well. If a source does not specify a publication date, add the date on which you accessed the information (online) at the end of the reference (e.g., Accessed 22 Sep. 2018).
The location element’s content depends on the type of source being cited. It could include a page range for a book chapter or journal article, a URL or DOI for an online source, or the location of a physical object or performance.
Formatting the Works Cited Page in 4 Steps
Once you have entered all the references, you can copy the entire list. The final step is to format the works cited page, adhering to the general MLA formatting guidelines. Now, let’s walk through the four steps of the setup process:
- Font: Select the 12-point Times New Roman font. (Typical font)
- Header: For the page header, double-click at the top of the page, enter your last name, insert automatic page numbering, and align it to the right.
- Margin & Spacing: Set 1-inch page margins and double line spacing.
- Title: Place the section heading “Works Cited” in plain text, centered at the top of the page.
Formatting the works cited page wasn’t too challenging, was it? If you need further assistance with MLA style, we’ve got you covered with additional comprehensive guides and helpful tools in our related Articles on Citing and Referencing and the Literature Review. It contains everything you need to excel. So feel free to move on! See you there!