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MLA Style (8th/9th Ed.)

MLA8 Citation list in brief

Missing information is not indicated in the citation.

Use letter by letter alphabetization for your citations.


Single: Last Name, First Name Initial. Additional source by the same author: use ---. in place of their name (3 hyphens & a period.)

2 authors: Last Name, First Name, and First Name Last Name.

3 or more authors: Last Name, First Name, et al.

No author: Begin your citation with Title.

Organization is both author and publisher: begin the entry with the work's title, and list the organization only as publisher.

Title of source.

Italics: Book titles, Plays, Anthologies, and Database names. (These are Containers.)

“Quotation marks:” Article title, webpage title, chapter, and poems etc. in an anthology.

No title? Add a short description. Eg: photograph of – chart showing – gif of cat with …


Italicize them and follow by a comma: Journal Title, Anthology title, name of streaming site or database.

Eg: Sports Medicine, Riverside anthology of literature, Netflix, or ARTstor.


Description of their role follow by a comma then First Name Last Name: narrated by – performance by

Eg: Translated by Natasha Randall, or poetry reading by Kim Catrall, etc.


Follows title and ends in a comma. Eg: 2nd edition or Canadian edition or  Director’s cut.


Your source is part of a number sequence or series. Abbreviate volume to vol. and number to no.

Eg: Orange is the New Black, S02 – E04. or Journal name, vol. 10, no. 4, etc.


Omit words such as Company & their abbreviations: Co., Inc., Ltd., Corp. Omit the publisher for a web site or newspaper if it duplicates information.

Shorten University Press to UP E.g. Oxford UP etc. More than one? separate with a forward slash. E.g. National Gallery / Yale UP,

Publication date, 

Write the full date as you find it on the source.  Format: Day Month Year Eg: Jan. 2013. Ends in either a period or comma.

Date missing? Do not write "No date" or "N.d."


This varies with different source types: page numbers, a permalink, a URL, or a physical location. Exclude http:// & https://

Eg: pp. 193-200, or pp. 57+ or  doi:10.1353/pmc.2000.0021. or Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

Use p. for a single page source, pp. for multiple pages, add a Plus sign (57+) for multiple non-consecutive pages. 

No page numbers? Do not try to guess or count paragraphs, leave out missing information.

Supplemental Elements

Date of access, Date of original publication, City of publication, Series name, and Information on prior publication.

Your best estimate for missing information can be included in square brackets with a question mark Eg. for publication date: [2008?]

Include a description of an unusual or unexpected source type like a web comment or reblog. Eg. Slam Poetry performance: “Bic for Her.” poetry written and recited by Mary Pinkowski, or for a dissertation or Master's thesis: Diss., MA thesis, or MS thesis.

Core Elements Format

The MLA 8th ed. does not provide rules for citing specific types of resources.  They provide a universal set of guidelines for any type of material based based on the core elements. The explosion of new and emerging social media platforms create many citation challenges.

With the rapid increase in online art, fan art, cat memes, digital remixing and Photoshop battles it is tempting to assume works found online only need a URL for a citation. This is not the case! It is your responsibility as a scholar to find the originating source and give them credit for their time and creative effort. 


Author Last Name, First Name or Initial. “Title - subject line of e-mail.” Name of
receiver, Date sent.

Shearer, K. “Public Poetry Reading Aug 1.” J. Gattrell, 7 July 2013.

In-text: (Shearer)

NOTE "When you document an e-mail message, use its subject as the title.  The subject is enclosed in quotation marks and its capitalization standardized." (MLA Handbook, 8th edition, page 29)

Tweet or Social media post

Author Last Name, First Name or Initial (if available). “Title.” Internet Site. Publisher (if applicable), Publication Date, Location URL.

@persiankiwi. "We have report of large street battles in east & west of Tehran now - #Iranelection." Twitter, 23 June 2009, 11:15 a.m.,

In-text: (@persiankiwi. "We have report of large street battles in east & west of Tehran now - #Iranelection.)

NOTE In the main text of the essay, a tweet is cited in its entirety, including hash tags. Pseudonyms and online user names are generally given like regular author names. (MLA Handbook, 8th edition, page 24)

If the handle resembles the account name (e.g., @aliciakeys and Alicia Keys), generally omit the handle if you include a URL in the entry.

Memes, Gifs & Reposts


Author Last Name, First Name or Initial (if available). “Title.” Social Media Site.
Publisher (if applicable), Publication Date, Location URL. 


Gif of "Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez responding to Patricia Arquette's Oscar speech 2015",

In Text: (Gif M. Streep)

NOTE A description of the resource you are citing can precede the title 'Gif of' in the above example. Also do your best to find and link to the original source of the item, particularly if it is a remix or fan-art to give credit to the correct creators. Since online sources often disappear a description of the image can be used in place of Author or Title, as show in this example.