Everything to Know About the MLA Format

Suppose, you’re in the class and your teacher has assigned you a research paper with proper writing and citation requirements. However, one of the criteria of the assignment is MLA Format. Well, you’ve probably heard this word somewhere but don’t know what it is, where it is used, how to use it.

Don’t worry! In this handbook, you’ll get to know everything about the MLA format citations from basis to complexities. Eliminate all you fear about the MLA format because this is only a style of citations within an assignment, essay, or a dissertation. So, have a look on MLA format and implement this style on your paper.

What is MLA Format?

MLA, Modern Language Association, is an academic style of citations, which is basically used for literary essays, researches, dissertations, and assignments for humanities-based disciplines.

Nonetheless, while using the MLA format for your writing, it is significant to know about the fundamental sub elements of this formatting style, and how and where to use them in a right way. Moreover, citing the references is an essential part while writing a paper in order to prevent your research-based paper from plagiarism.

MLA Text and Body Formatting Tips

Before moving towards the examples of the MLA format reference from different sources, you should know about the basic requirements, such as what line space is MLA format, what should be the font size and style, and other things.

Keep in mind, follow the guidelines mentioned below while using the MLA format style.

  • Font style should be Time New Roman
  • Font size should be 12
  • 1-inch margin between pages
  • Double line spacing
  • Half-inch indent MLA spacing between paragraphs
  • Capitalized title case for headings
  • Page numberings should be there

So, these are the basic requirements to apply an MLA format citation in your paper. Therefore, if your instructor does not provide any guidelines about the format style, you can follow the above guidelines for ideal formation.

Font Style in MLA Formatting

While writing your paper, make sure that you choose a readable font style and size. Do not keep the font too concise that your teacher would require a magnifying glass to read it. And, do not keep it too big to place one sentence in a single page. However, an ideal font style is Times New Roman with 12 size. This style and size would make a clear distinction between the italicized and regular text. Keeping the font size won’t make your paper look extensive.

Spacing and Margin

On the other hand, when it comes to the line spacing and paper margins in MLA formatting, always stick to double line spacing throughout the paper. Moreover, the line adjustment should be left-alignment or justified alignment. It is also significant to indent every new paragraph by hitting the “tab” button on the left of your keyboard. Also, ensure to follow the right punctuation to keep your paper organized.

Numbering in MLA Format

Bear in mind, you should not write number in directly in your paper while following the MLA format citations, but you must follow the guidelines. The MLA styles basically explains when to use Roman and Arabic numbers in the paper. It means, whether you need to use the numbers in numeric form or in spelling format, like one, ten, or thirty-five, etc. For instance, if you are writing a short or single-digit number, it is a good practice to write it in roman spelled form. However, stick to the Arabic numerals for longer numbers such as 1,234,567.

Abbreviations in MLA Format

If you believe that a specific name of a person, organization, or anything is being repeated in your paper which is too long to write frequently, you can use abbreviations in the MLA formatting. But, there are also some rules to use abbreviations and acronyms in MLA format citations. For instance, take the first letter of each main word of the name and keep them capitalized, such as USA, UNESCO, NASA, etc. On the other hand, abbreviate months and days by keeping their first three letters, like Tue, Sat, Sep, Dec, etc.

MLA Format Citations Examples

Below are some MLA format examples to cite different sources in your writing. So, whether you want to write a header, in-text citation, or anything, check out these examples to know about the MLA format citations in a better manner.

  • The MLA in-text format citations are done through the parenthetical citations in spite of the source.
  • However, the citations should go at the end of the sentence before the period where you are referencing a direct source in quoted or paraphrased form.
  • The essay format MLA follows the style of author page that includes the author’s last name and page number without any comma in between.

 A few MLA format examples are given below in different formats including

General MLA In-Text Citation

He saw Dior, who was trying to escape the “sizzling melting sunny day” and running as fast as he could to reach the home (Christopher 6).

You can see from the above example that the citation is placed once the sentence is finished and before the period. Yet, only last name of the author is come within the brackets along with the page number from where the line is picked.

Keep in mind, the in-text citations should not include author’s first name or anything else. But, there it is not necessary to keep this information in the last of the sentence. There is an alternative way of MLA format citations as well.

Christopher saw Dior, who was trying to escape the “sizzling melting sunny day” and running as fast as he could to reach the home (6).

If you’re referencing only one work throughout your paper, you can simply use an alternative style of the MLA formatting. On the flip side, if you are referencing multiple works from the same author of different works form various authors, it is crucial to follow the MLA format guidelines and use the last name of the author every time. Through this way, no confusion would be left while reading the text.

MLA Format Citations of Different Sources

All of the citations you used in your essay are collected on a Works Cited page in MLA format. We are highlighting the most popular source categories including, books and articles, which include print and digital forms. While acknowledging that there are other more sorts of reference containers from which you may be citing. These examples show how appropriately structured references should be written in MLA style.

You will discover a basic technique for referencing the source in your Works Cited page for each of the containers listed below, along with an illustration to help you understand it.

MLA Book Citation Format

If you are using books as the source for your paper, use the MLA book citation format given below:

Book with Single Author

Here comes the simplest form of book MLA format style, which is also very common. A general citation formatting for a book follows the style:

·         Last Name, First Name. Book Title. Publisher, Publishing Date.

For instance

Mantel, Hilary. The Mirror and The Light. Fourth Estate Henry Holt and Co., 5 March 2020.

Book with Two Authors

On the second hand, if you are referencing a book with two authors, you should follow the reference format in the style mentioned underneath:

  • The names of the authors should be written in the way they are written in book.
  • Whatever the organization is, make sure to write the last name first, then the first name. With the second author, first name comes first and last name.
  • Last Name, First Name and First Name Last Name. Book Title. Publisher, Date of Publication.

For instance

Kaufman, Amie and Meagan Spooner. Beyond the End of the World. HarperCollins, 18 January 2022.

MLA periodical citation Format

Periodicals are the sources from print or digital articles. This is one of the most common reference source while writing a research paper. However, the article and website citation in MLA format is a bit different because the page number is only included of you are referencing a multi-page source. Yet, if the material is acquired from online platform, the page number requirement can be neglected.

·         Last Name, First Name. Periodical Title. Date (DMY), Pages.

For instance

James, Diana. The Impact of Bilingual Parents on Children. 04 September 2009.

If you want to cite ted talks in MLA format, read the blog to compose a next-level paper.

Still, if you are unable to create the MLA citations in your paper, there are a number of online tools available that automatically generate citations in MLA format just by providing the required information.

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Five Best MLA Citation Generators on Internet

Below is a list of top five MLA citation generators to ease students’ research paper.

Final Verdict

So, this was all about the MLA format citations, in which we tried to illustrate the examples of every possible source including generation citation, books, articles, and journals in MLA style. We hope this guide has provided a comprehensive knowledge about what is MLA citation and how to apply this to your paper. On the other hand, if you still are unable to follow the guidelines, you can use the online MLA citation generator to create the citation automatically. So, avoid making general mistakes and prevent your paper from plagiarism.

People Also Ask

1. How to get MLA format on google docs?

  • Open a new document on google.
  • Go to Files > New, select Template.
  • From Template, open Template Gallery in a separate browser.
  • Scroll down to the Education section.
  • Select Report MLA Add-on.

You can also add citations of different styles in google docs.

2. How to write an essay in MLA format?

  • The format of an MLA citation within an essay includes the following criteria:
  • Times New Roman font style with 12 font size.
  • 1-inch margin from left, right, top, and bottom.
  • Double spacing between the text.
  • Left or justified alignment.
  • 1-inch indent block quotes.
  • Indent the first word of the paragraph by pressing “tab” button.

3. What is MLA header?

An MLA header is included on each page of the entire paper. It is also placed in a specific format such as, last name and page number without any punctuation mark in between. An MLA header is used to keep the pages organized throughout the paper.

4. What is MLA citation style used for?

Essentially, an MLA style is used for citing the reference in a paper. An MLA style is the second most popular reference style after APA and is mainly used for the research of literature, philosophy, humanities, and languages disciplines.

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