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MLA Style Help

Assistance with MLA citation

Paper Set-up (Style Center)

  • Times New Roman, 12 pt. font
  • Use standard 8.5 x 11-inch paper.
  • Double spaced
  • 1" margins on all sides
  • Paragraphs begin with a 1/2" indent.  You can do this by hitting the "Tab" key on your keyboard or pressing the space bar five times.
  • Page numbers in the header are to be preceded only with your last name (ie. Carlson 1; NOT Carlson-1, Carlson p. 1) 0.5" from the top of the page.
  • Endnotes belong on a separate page at the end of your paper and before your Works Cited.
  • Do not use a title page; Instead (see image)
    •  Place your name, professor's name, course, date due on separate lines flush left
    • On the next line center the title of your paper
    • Highlights in picture form the different areas to format your paper in MLA style. 
       

Numbers (Part 2-1.4)

  • If your paper infrequently uses numbers, spell the number (ie one, two, forty, etc.)
  • If your paper frequently uses numbers, use numerals followed by a unit of measure
    • Never begin a sentence with numerals; spell out the number
    • Use commas to break up larger numbers as appropriate

Quotations (Part 2-1.3)

The use of quotations should be accurate and brief.

  • Prose (Part 2-1.3.2)
    • If less than 4 lines of text, incorporate into the text with quotation marks and an in-citation when needed.
    • If more than 4 lines of text, use a block quote.
      • No quotation marks needed
      • ​Indent an extra .5" from margin
      • Place in-text citation after the entire quote (including punctuation)
      • The first line of a block quotation with internal paraphrasing no longer begins with a paragraph indent, even if the source has one already.
  • Poetry (Part 2-1.3.3)
    • For line breaks, insert a forward slash (/) with spaces on either side
    • For stanza breaks, insert 2 forward slashes (//) with spaces on either side.  This applies to run-in quotations as well.
    • If more than 4 lines of text, use a block quote.
      • No quotation marks needed
      • ​Indent an extra .5" from margin
      • Place in-text citation after the entire quote (including punctuation)
      • Replicate spacing as close to the original as possible
    • Citations may require line or other numbers (See Part 2-3.3.2)
  • Drama (Part 2-1.3.4)
    • Block quote format
      • No quotation marks needed
      • ​Indent an extra .5" from margin
      • Place in-text citation after the entire quote (including punctuation)
    • Capitalize  all letters of character's name
    • Indent all lines of character's part further.
  • Non-Latin Works
    • If you are using works not written in the Latin alphabet, you must either convert the titles and quotations to the Latin alphabet (romanization) or use the work's original language.  Whichever you choose, it must remain consistent throughout the paper.

Abbreviations

  • Uppercase letter abbreviations
    • If an abbreviation has all capital letters, do not place periods or spaces between the letters unless it represents a name.
      • Example: US (United States), OH (Ohio), MA (Massachusetts), J. R. R. Tolkien
    • Names composed of only initials do not have periods between each letter.
      • Example: JFK, MLK
  • Lowercase letter abbreviations
    • Periods belong at the end if they end with a lowercase letter.  The only exception to this is in the case of Internet suffixes, where the period comes before the letters (.com, .gov, .org, etc.).
      • Example: assn., e.g., i.e.
  • In-text citations
    •