MLA Style Sheet


Work the quoted passage into the syntax of your sentence
This should be enclosed in double quotation marks and referenced at the end of the sentence.

Begin your quoted section with a colon
This can either be used in the syntax of a sentence or can be proceeded by an introductory statement. The latter is mostly reserved for long quotations.

Footnotes / Endnotes:

The MLA recommends that you keep footnotes (bottom of the page) and endnotes (end of the text) to a minimum in order to prevent the readership from becoming distracted. Footnotes/endnotes are reserved for two purposes; firstly they can supply additional material for the argument and secondly they can denote other sources that might be of interest to the reader.

Preparing List of Works Cited:

Each paper should have a bibliography of works cited on the final page. This need only be a list of works cited rather than works consulted. The list of works cited (the MLA prefer this term to the more restricted ‘bibliography) should be double-spaced. Begin the first line of an entry flush left.


Author’s last name, first name. Book title. Additional information. City of publication: Publication company, publication date.
Seth, Vikram. A Suitable Boy. London: Phoenix,1994.

  • Author: the name of the author should be cited accurately. If a work is written by two authors, place an ‘and’ between the names e.g. last name, first name and first name, last name. If a work has been written by more than three authors, use the term ‘et al.’.
  • Title: the title should be accurately quoted and underlined. Note the capitalisation of the title and cite accordingly.
  • Editor/ Translator: the names of editors and translators should be cited in the same manner as the author’s name. Indicate the role with the terms ‘ed.’ or ‘trans.’ For multiple editors or translators cite all names or use ‘et al.’ and indicate role with the terms ‘eds.’ or ‘trans.’.
    Rivkin, Julie and Michael Ryan eds. Literary Theory: an anthology. Oxford: Blackwell, 2000.
  • Details of publication: The city of publication the publication company and the publication date should all be cited in that order (see above examples).
  • Page numbers: these should be referenced with numbers only and not proceeded by a ‘p’ or pg’.
  • Work in an Anthology: The title of the article should be placed in double quotation marks and the title of the anthology should be underlined.
  • An edition other than the first:
    Chaucer, Geoffrey. The Riverside Chaucer. Ed. Larry D. Benson. 3rd ed. Boston: Houghton, 1987.

Articles in Periodicals:

Author’s last name, first name. “Article title.” Periodical title. Date: inclusive pages.
Leggett, John C. “Working-class Consciousness, Race and Political Choice.” American Journal of Sociology 69.2 Sep 1963: 171-176.

Article in Daily Newspaper:

Oakeshott, Matthew. “Why the Tories don’t stand a chance in this election.” The Independent 30 Mar. 2005, nat. ed., 31.

Theses and Dissertation:

Jones, Leonard Abraham. “The British Worker’s Theatre, 1917-1939.” Diss. Karl-Marx University Leipzig, 1963. If the thesis has been published then the title should be underlined.


The Great Escape. Dir. John Sturges United Artists 1963.


Antony and Cleopatra. By William Shakespeare. Dir Braham Murray. Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester. 23rd Feb. 2005.

References in the Text:

Within the main body of the text, sources can be documented using parenthetical references. This allows for clarity and brevity. References should be made as follows:

  • Cite the author’s last name and the page number(s) referred to.
    The author suggests that "it is quite possible to draw with a high-key colour, just as one may be able to build up harmonious masses of colour, and yet remain essentially a draughtsman" (Baudelaire 38).
  • If the author’s name is in the sentence then the reference need only contain the page number(s) and the name of the author may be omitted.
  • There is no need for parenthetical reference if an entire work is cited.
    This method of denotation is perfectly acceptable if the author of the paper has attached a list of works cited.

Further Information:

If you have any further enquiries regarding the MLA please contact Forum or consult the MLA website at