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Cite Your Sources in MLA 9th: The Basics

About MLA 9th

This guide is a quick introduction to the MLA 9th edition citation style. MLA is a citation style developed by the Modern Language Association and is primarily used in the Humanities. 

MLA Resources

MLA Video Introduction

In-Text Citations

In-text citations are the short citations in parentheses that you will include in the body of your paper or assignment. They appear at the end of a sentence or paragraph in which you have either directly quoted or paraphrased an outside source.

Basic Format:

(Last Name Page Number)

If you mention the author's name in the sentence or paragraph, you can omit the author's name and only include the page number. If a source does not have page numbers, such as a webpage, you may skip the page number.


"Culture forms our beliefs" (Anzaldúa 38).

According to Anzaldúa, "culture forms our beliefs" (38).


I'm citing...

One Author


(Last Name Page Number)


(Anzaldúa 30)

Two Authors


(First Author's Last Name and Second Author's Last Name Page Number)


(Wykes and Gunter 53)

Three or More Authors


(First Author's Last Name et al. Page Number)


(Chan et al. 97)

Group or Corporate Author


(Group Name Page Number)


(Calgary Educational Partnership Foundation 230)

If your full citation for a group author starts with the title rather than the group's name, follow the "No Author" in-text citation rules instead.

No Author


(Title of Longer Work or "Title of Shorter Work" Page Number)


(Fair Housing 15)

("How to Teach")

For more guidelines and examples, check out the Purdue OWL In-Text Citation Guide.

Works Cited List

Your Works Cited list will appear at the end of your paper or project, and will contain a list of citations in alphabetical order corresponding to the in-text citations you used in the body of your project. Each citation will include the complete publication information for that source, so that anyone may find and check the sources.

The format for your citations will differ depending on the type of source you are citing. Please select your source type below for detailed instructions.

Formatting Your Paper

For detailed instructions on how to format your paper in MLA 9th style, please visit Formatting Your Paper.