MLA Style: A Guide for BC Students

Based on the 9th edition of MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers.

For more examples, see:

Format Guidelines Books and Plays
Periodical Articles Websites & Films/TV

Format Guidelines for Works Cited

# Information Example
1. Author.

One author: Cannon, Joseph S.

Two authors: Dorrison, Michael, and Louise Erdrich.

Three or more authors: Burdick, Anne, et al.

2. Title of source.

Book title (if self-contained): The Devil's Highway.

Title of article, webpage, or chapter name (if part of a larger work): “Anemia, Iron Depletion, and the Blood Donor: It's Time to Work on the Donor's Behalf.”

3. Title of container,

Title of larger work (periodical, book, website):

Encyclopedia of Diversity and Social Justice,

Academic Search Premier,

4. Other contributors,

Names of others who contributed to the source:

Edited by Howard S. Becker,

Translated by Seamus Heaney,

5. Version,

Use if a version or edition is indicated:

King James Version, Expanded ed., 3rd ed.,

6. Number,

Volume number in book series: vol. 4,

Volume & issue number for scholarly journals: vol. 22, no. 3,

7. Publisher,

Book publisher:

Oxford UP,

Penguin Press,

If website: Name of website

8. Publication date,

If book, year of publication: 2003,

If article, day month year: 28 Sept. 2013,

9. Location.

If book or article: Page number(s): p.33., pp.97-108.

If website or video: URL or DOI, omitting the http:// and the carrot brackets <>

Note: If available, use the "Permalink" option when copying the URL.

While the 9th edition does not specify that database providers be included in citations for online databases, the Bakersfield College English department has stipulated the inclusion of this information in citations for the sake of clarity. This means that the names of database providers, such as EBSCO and Gale, should follow the database title.

Basic Forms for Periodical Articles

Scholarly journals, magazines, and newspapers

Formats for electronic versions of periodicals begin the way that formats for print ones do, but after the pages (years, if there are no pages), we usually provide what MLA calls "locations," such as databases and URLs.

A scholarly journal from an online database

# Information Example
1. Author. Borchardt, Jaime.
2. "Title of Article" "Alcohol and Energy Drinks Among the College Population."
Container 1
3. Title of container, Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education,
5-6. vol. #, issue #, vol. 60, no. 3,
8. Publication date, Dec. 2016,
9. Location (pages). pp. 16-21.
Container 2
3. Name of database, Academic Search Complete,
[Name of database provider], EBSCO,
9. Location (URL or DOI).

Author(s). "Title of article." Journal, vol., no., date, pages. Database, provider, URL.


Ilie, Gabriela, et al. "Energy Drinks, Alcohol, Sports, and Traumatic Brain Injuries among Adolescents." PLoS ONE, vol. 10, no. 9, 16 Sept. 2016, pp. 1-13. Academic Search Premier, EBSCO, url=

A scholarly journal article in print

Author(s). "Title of Article." Journal, vol., no., date, pages.


Aroke, Edwin N., and Jennifer R. Dungan. "Pharmacogenetics and Anesthesia: An Integrative Review." Nursing Research, vol. 65, no. 4, July/Aug. 2016, pp. 318-30.

Magazine article in print

Author(s). "Title of article." Magazine, date, pages.


Edwards, Haley Sweetland, "Leaving Tests Behind." Time, 16 Feb. 2015, pp. 28-31.

Note: If volume and issue numbers are available, include them in the citation as in the examples above.

Newspaper article in print

Author(s). "Title of article." Newspaper, date, pages.


Kaleem, Jaweed. "Milwaukee's Top Cops Reflect the Intricacies of Race." The Los Angeles Times, 23 Aug. 2016, pp. A1+.

Basic Forms for Books and Plays

When providing publishers' names, omit "business" words and their abbreviations, such as Company (Co.), Incorporated (Inc.), and Limited (Ltd.). With University Presses, replace University with U and Press with P, for example, U of Maryland P or Oxford UP. For all other publishers, reproduce the names in full.

A Book

# Information Example
1. Author(s) Rieff, David.
2. Title of container. The Reproach of Hunger: Food, Justice, and Money in the Twenty-first Century.
7. Publisher, Simon & Schuster,
8. Publication date. 2015.

Author(s). Title. Publisher, date.


Rieff, David. The Reproach of Hunger: Food, Justice, and Money in the Twenty-first Century. Simon & Schuster, 2015.

An e-book

Author(s). Title. Publisher, date. Provider, URL.


Lynas, Mark. Nuclear 2.0: Why a Green Future Needs Nuclear Power. UIT Cambridge, 2013. eBook Academic Collection, EBSCO,

Reference book (or work within an anthology)

Author(s). "Title of article." Title of collection, edited by Editor's Name(s), volume, publisher, date, pages.


Stranges, Anthony N. "Oil from Coal Process." Encyclopedia of 20th-century Technology, edited by Colin A. Hempstead, Routledge, 2004, pp. 545-49.


  1. Authors of reference articles are often listed at the beginning or end of the article.
  2. If citing an anthology and not a reference book, include the name of the publisher after the editor's name, and include page numbers after the date.

Basic Forms for Web Sites

While not required, it is a good idea to add the date you accessed the source, as web sources can change day by day.

A page on a website

# Information Example
1. Author(s). Nye, Bill.
2. Title of article. "Why I Choose to Challenge Climate Change Deniers."
7. Source, The Huffington Post,
8. Publication date, 5 May 2016,
9. Location (URL).
[Date of access] 15 Aug. 2016.

Author(s). "Article." Site, date, URL. Date of access.


Nye, Bill. "Why I Choose to Challenge Climate Change Deniers." The Huffington Post, 5 May 2016, Accessed 15 Aug. 2016.

An entire website

Author(s) if available, Site, name of publisher, date, URL. Date of access.


Modern Language Association, Modern Language Association of America, 2016, Accessed 25 Aug. 2016.

A YouTube Video

Author(s). "Title of video." YouTube, uploaded by Uploader, date, URL.


"Research Ethics: Avoiding Plagiarism." YouTube, uploaded by gracevdblibrary, 8 Apr. 2015,

Basic Forms for Films/TV

A film

Name of director(s) or other creator, role. Title. Studio, year.


Kornbluth, Jacob, director. Inequality for All. Radius, 2013.

A television episode

"Episode." Series, season #, episode #, written by Writer, directed by Director, distributor, date.


"94 Meetings." Parks & Recreation, season 2, episode 21, written by Harris Wittels, directed by Tristam Shapeero, NBC, 29 Apr. 2010.

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