MLA Style Guide

MLA (Modern Language Association) Style Guide.

This page has been updated according to the 8th edition of the MLA handbook (2016).

The list of works cited

  • Put entries in the works-cited list in alphabetical order.
  • If your essay is in English, make your bibliography in English.
  • Give author's last name first (example "Ibsen, Henrik"). Give the author's name as it appears on the title page.
  • If a book has more than one author, reverse only the name of the first author. 
  • Line 2 in an entry starts with an indentation of five spaces.

The core elements in an entry are as follows:

1) Author.
2) Title of source.
3) Title of container,
4) Other contributors,
5) Version,
6) Number,
7) Publisher,
8) Publication date,
9) Location.

These are given in the order they should appear in your entry. If an element is not relevant to the work being documented it should be omitted.

An entry of a book with one author will look like this:

Birch, Anthony H. The Concepts and Theories of Modern Democracy.
     Routledge, 1993.

Author. Title. Publisher, Publication date.

(Note: if you are familiar with the 7th edition of MLA, you see that the main difference is that in the new version place and media type are not included in the entry.)

Here are some more examples. For further guidance consult the MLA Handbook or go to The MLA Style Center.

Book with two authors:

Dorris, Michael, and Louise Erdrich. The Crown of Columbus. HarperCollins
     Publishers, 1999.

Book with three or more authors:

Morison, Samuel Eliot, et al. A Concise History of the American Republic. Oxford
     University Press, 1983.

Book with editor:

Evans, Sterling, editor. American Indians in American History 1870-2001: a
     Companion Reader.
Praeger, 2002.

Chapter in a book with an editor:

Copeland, Edward. "Money." The Cambridge Companion to Jane Austen, edited by
     Copeland and Juliet McMaster, Cambridge UP, 1997, pp. 131-48.

One volume in a multivolume work:

Howells, W. D. Their Wedding Journey. Edited by John K. Reeves, 1968. A selected
     edition of W. D. Howells, general editor, Edwin H. Cady, vol. 5, Indiana UP,

Journal article:

Goodson, Ivor. "The Social History of School Subjects." Scandinavian 
     Journal of Educational Research,
vol. 34, no. 2, 1990, pp. 111-23.

A journal article retrieved from a database:

Goldman, Anne. "Questions of Transport: Reading Primo Levi Reading Dante." Georgia
     Review, vol. 64, no. 1, 2010, pp. 69-88. JSTOR,

A video on a web site:

“Curiosity Rover Report (August 2015): Three Years on Mars!” NASA’s Journey to
     Mars: Videos
, edited by Sarah Loff, National Aeronautics and Space
     Administration, 30 July 2015,
     index.html. Accessed 22 June 2016.

About web sites:

  • Remove the http:// before the URL.
  • Include the date you accessed the source since online materials change or can be removed at any time.


More examples can be found at Purdue Online Writing Lab.



Modern Language Association of America. MLA Handbook. The Modern Language
     Association of America, 2016.


In-text citations

Cite your sources using parenthetical citations in your text. These citations need to correspond to the alphabetical list of works that appears at the end of your paper.

A typical MLA citation looks like this (Smith 4). Smith is the author of the work, 4 is the page number. The rest of the reference is to be found in the list of works cited under the name Smith.

The MLA citations should contain only the information needed in order for your readers to find the source in the works-cited list. If you use the author’s name in the text, only the page number should appear in the citation, like this (4).

If you have more than one work by the same author in the list of works cited, you should give a shortened version of the titles as well, like this (Smith, International 4).

See pages 54-58 and 116-127 in the MLA Handbook (8th edition) for more details and examples.



Modern Language Association of America. MLA Handbook. The Modern Language
     Association of America, 2016.

Publisert 3. mai 2018 10:55 - Sist endret 22. feb. 2019 09:30