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MLA 9th Edition Citations Guide - Maple Woods

Welcome! Nervous about MLA citations? This is the place for you! Information about in-text citations, bibliography format, and general rules of practice for citations in academia!

In-Text Citations

In-text citations show the reader the exact source of the information. The citation should match sources displayed in the Works Cited page. 

For example, parenthetical citations will list the first part of the Works Cited entry (generally an author's last name or the name of the item) and then the location (generally a page number).


What follows below are examples utilizing different Works Cited sources and how they would be listed for an in-text citation. 

Ex: Fisher, Laura R. Reading for Reform: The Social Work of Literature in the Progressive Era. University of Minnesota Press, 2019.

Author's name in text (paraphrase):

According to Fisher, leaders from the upper echelon of society provided a check on each other's actions and behaviors (87).


Author's name in text (with quote): 

Fisher states,"Proximity...produces a portable method for reading literature and history together" (13).

*Note:  An ellipsis (...) indicates that words from the original text were omitted in the quote displayed.


Author's name in text, with only part of the sentence referencing the author's ideas: 

Fisher notes that many working women dealt with internal strife because they "and their allies were already on the defense" (92).


Quote longer than four lines:

Women entering the work force, even on a limited basis, had a large impact on society:

                  [W]orking girls' clubs were structured around the pedagogical value of contrast between wage earners and the leisure class, 

                  virtuous and immoral working women, the refined and the fallen, and they aimed to publicize the similarities and distinctions among 

                  women by linking cross-class sociability to print culture. Though riven with unresolved conflicts at the nexus of gender, race, and

                  especially class--or perhaps because it was was riven with such conflicts--the movement sought to create a new social taxonomy of

                  white working women at a transitional moment in U.S. modernity. (Fisher 77)

  • *Notes: Double-space and indent quotes that are longer than 4 lines within the text. There is no need to place them in quotation marks. Include the page number and author (if not in text) in parentheses at the end. Put the punctuation directly at the end of the quote, not after the documentation as you normally would.
  • *If you make a change in the text to fit the format of your paper, put the change inside brackets as indicated with the W. (The W was lower case in the actual quote.)

Ex: Wharton, Edith. The Age of Innocence. Macmillan, 1996. ---. The House of Mirth. Bedford, 1994.

When two or more works by the same author are included in the Works Cited page. Use a partial title name so the reader knows which source is being used: 

"Her discretions interested him almost as much as her imprudences" (Wharton, Mirth 25).

"No expense had been spared on the setting, which was acknowledged to be beautiful..." (Wharton, Age 32).

*Note: When you use two or more sources by the same author, use three hyphens and a period to indicate the duplication of the author. In the Works Cited page, list the sources alphabetically by the title as indicated in example B above.

Ex: "Diabetes." Diabetes:Symptoms and Causes,, 2020,

Article is listed by title on the Works Cited page because no author is displayed:

"Glucose is vital to your health because it's an important source of energy" ("Diabetes").


*Note: If the title of the work is italicized in your Works Cited, it should also be Italicized in your in-text citation.  Similar rules apply if the title is listed within quotation marks in the Works Cited source list as noted in example C.

Ex: Poe, Edgar Allan. The Illustrated Poetry of Edgar Allan Poe. Gramercy, 2001.

Poem with line-breaks in-text:  

In the Sonnet "Silence," the facets of quiet are clearly described: "There is a two-fold Silence--sea and shore--/Body and soul. One dwells in lonely places,/Newly with grass o'ergrown; some solemn graces"( Poe 18).

*Note: one forward slash (/) indicates a line break. Two forward slashes (//) are used to indicate a stanza break. Four or more lines of poetry should be formatted as it appears in the actual poem.

More Information on Citing and Paraphrasing

 There are two ways to synthesize others' research into your own assignment: you can paraphrase the information or quote it directly. 

Paraphrasing is used as a way to show you understand what another author states. However, you must rephrase the information in your own words. You cannot just change a few words and claim that you successfully paraphrased the information. Also, be sure to include an in-text citation to the original work you consulted.

Quoting is when you directly copy a selection from another author.  You must phrase the information exactly as it appeared in the original work. You will need to use quotation marks (or block quoting) to note the beginning and the end of the direct quote.  Also, be sure to include an in-text citation to the original work you consulted.

For more information on when to use paraphrasing or direct quotes, consult the site listed below:

Quoting and paraphrasing