Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

MLA 9: Works Cited Page

Learn how to format your papers and cite sources in MLA 9th edition..

Guidance from MLA & Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Basic Works CIted Formatting Guidelines

  • Works Cited refers to the page at the end of your paper listing all the sources you used.
  • Works Cited should be centered at the top of the page
  • Order citations alphabetically, typically by author last name
  • Format author(s) in citations as follows:
    • 1 author: last name, first name.
      •  Reddy, Anisha.
    • 2 authors: last name, first name, and first name last name.
      • Reddy, Anisha, and Nate Conner. 
    • 3 authors or more: last name, first name, et al.
      • Jones, Steve, et al.
  • For citations that are longer than one line, include a hanging indent after the first line
  • Place quotation marks around sources in containers, such as a poem, short story, book chapter, journal article, etc.
  • Italicize sources for standalone items, such as a novel, play, journal, book, etc.
  • Capitalize main words in a title and subtitle
    • don't capitalize words like a, an, the, is, etc., unless it's the first word in the title or subtitle
  • DOIs are preferred over permalinks for scholarly journal articles. If the DOI doesn't have https://, precede the DOI with https://doi.org/
    • https://doi.org/10.1002/tox.20155
  • You can usually omit the http:// or https:// from URLs (keep for DOI, though)
  • The access date is a supplemental element.
    • Access date is not needed for content from library databases.
    • Access date is recommended for online sources that don't have a publication date / can be removed or changed. If included, add the access date at the end of your citation as follows:
      • Accessed Day Mon. Year.

Elements

  • Create citations for your Works Cited page using this template with its elements.
  • Your citation may not have all the elements. If an element is missing, skip it and move to the next element.
  • You may also repeat elements 3-9 depending on whether or not your source stands on its own or it is part of one or more containers.  
    • a full book is considered a self-contained / standalone source
    • a chapter within in a book has one container
      • The book is the container
    • an article from a journal that is found in a database has two containers
      • The journal is a container, and the database is another container
  • The access date is a supplemental element and recommended for online sources (not databases).
Order of Elements Element Followed by Correct Punctuation Example(s)
1 Author.  
2 Title of source. ...book chapter title, article title, reference entry title, etc.
3 Title of container, .... book title, journal name, database name
4 Contributor, Translators or Editors
5 Version, Edition
6 Number, Vol. and/or No. (Use Vol. for volume number and No. for issue number)
7 Publisher,  
8 Publication date,  
9 Location. Can refer to page numbers (pp.), a DOI to an article from a database, URL, etc. This doesn't refer to place of publication.

Merced College Library MLA 9 Handout

MLA 9 Handout

How to Format a Hanging Indent in Microsoft Office 365 Word

"Demonstration of how to format hanging indents in the browser version of Microsoft Word" (Bellevue College Writing Lab, 2:21).

How to Add Hanging Indents in Google Docs

This video shares "[h]ow to add hanging indents in Google Docs..." (Jen Jonson, 0:35).