Citation and Writing Guide

What is the MLA?

The Modern Language Association of America, MLA, is a professional association located in NYC and one of their jobs is to provide a format for citation. This guide is intended to provide citing formats for common sources you will use during your time as a middle school student, but the Purdue University Online Writing Lab features an extensive citation guide.

Plagiarism is often a touchy, blurry issue. A good rule of thumb is when in doubt, cite. Check out the Ten Types of Plagiarism at for examples.


  1. The works cited page is a separate page in your paper, and comes last.
  2. Title the page Works Cited and center that title.
  3. Use Times New Roman, size 12 font.
  4. Use hanging indentations.
  5. Alphabetize citations

Using Citation programs

Noodletools is a web citation program in which users must create their own username and password after logging into the  LBMS account using username: lbms and password: lancers. Use your network username and password when you create (2021astudent, password).

EasyBib does the generation for you, but it does not always find all the elements that are vailable on the Page. It also has an app in Google Docs for easy use.

Web Citations

Online Reference Work (such as Wikipedia, Britannica Online, Encyclopedia Smithsonian, ect.)

“Gridiron football.” Encyclopedia Britannica. 28 Nov. 2005. Web. 20 Dec. 2013.

Article title (in quotations). Name of online reference work (italics). Date of publication (dd Mmm YYYY) Web. Date of access (dd Mmm. YYYY).

Article from an Online Subscription service (such as Country Reports, CultureGrams, or World Book Online)

Pynchon, Thomas. "Lemuria" CountryReports. CountryReports. Web. 28 Apr. 2015.

Author of article (if available). Title of article (in quotations). Name of original publication (italics). Original publication date: pages (if applicable). Title of subscription service. Web. Date of access (dd Mmm. YYYY).


Bratby, John. Still Life with Chip Frier. South Bank Centre, London. 1965. Wikiart. Web. 28 April 2015.

Name of artist/photographer (creator of image). Name of image (in italics). Date of publication (dd Mmm. YYYY). Location of image (if available). Name of website where image was found (in italics). Web. Date of access (dd Mmm YYYY).

Other Website (general site, blog, newspaper, business, club, ect.)

Popova, Maria. "David Whyte on How to Break the Tyranny of Work/Life Balance." Brainpickings. 11 March 2015. Web. 19 April 2015.

    Name of person/author responsible for webpage if known. Title of page in quotations. Name of Site in italics. Date published (if available… if not, then put “n.d.”) Web. Date of access. (when you got your information from the site).

Print Citations

Book with one Author

     Barton, Johannes G. The Middle School Librarian Revealed. New York: Libraries Unlimited, 1999. Print.


     Author. Book title (italics). Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication. Print.

Book with more than one authors

        Riga, Nancy R., and R. G. Torrance. The Wonderful World of Antiques. New York: Dutton, 1997. Print.

        Authors (Last name first for first author only; first author then et. al.). Book title (italics). Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication. Print.

        Cipini, Thomas, et. al. Woods of the World. Chicago: New Forrest Press, 1976. Print.

Selection from an anthology

        Procopio, Michael. “On Toast.” Best Food Writing 2011. Ed. Holly Hughes. New York: De Capo, 2011. 297. Print.

        Author of selection.”Title of selection” (in quotations). Title of anthology (italics). Editor. Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication. Page number. Print.

Selection from reference work

        “Cardiovascular system.” New Book of Popular Science. Vol. 12. New York: Grolier, 2006. 278. Print.

        Author (if available). Title of article/ selection (in quotations). Title of reference work (italics). Volume (if applicable). Place of publication: Publisher, Year of publication. Page number. Print.

Article from magazine or newspaper article

         Dash, Mike. “For 40 Years, This Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II." Smithsonian Magazine 28 Jan. 2012: 37-41. Print.

        Author of magazine article (if available). Title of article (in quotations). Magazine title (italics). Date of publication; Page numbers. Print.

        Wells, Pete. “As Not Seen on TV” New York Times. 12 Nov. 2012: 4D. Print.

        Author of  newspaper article. Title of article (in quotations). Name of newspaper (italics). Date of publication: Section and page. Print.

In-text Citations

Use your head when documenting sources, common sense and ethics are key. Well-known things like proverbs, common knowledge or quotations need not be cited, but this choice would be based on your audience. Check with your teacher if you're unsure. (Stolley et al.).

The Online Writing Lab states "Common sense and ethics should determine your need for documenting sources" (Stolley et al.). So, sometimes you will not need to cite well-known quotations. Always check with your teacher if you aren't sure.

    On the works cited page, Stolley et al. appears as:

    Stolley, Karl, et al. "MLA Formatting and Style Guide." The OWL at Purdue. 10 May 2006. Purdue University Writing Lab. 12 May 2006.