General Guidelines for Print & Electronic Sources
All references to sources in the text of your paper must correspond to the source information on
the Works Cited page. Include in the parenthetical reference the first item that appears in the
corresponding Work Cited entry.
Be as brief and clear as possible. Give only the information needed to identify a source. For
print sources this is u
sually the author’s last name and a page reference.
If the author’s name
is written in the sentence, you only need to write the page where you found the information in
the citation. When there is no author, cite the title if brief or use a short form of the title followed
by the page number.
Place the parenthetical reference as close as possible to the material being documented and
where a pause would naturally occur, preferably at the end of a sentence.
The parenthetical reference should precede the punctuation mark that concludes the sentence,
clause, or phrase that contains the cited material.
If you wish to cite an entire work, it is preferable to include the author in the text, rather than in
the parenthetical reference.
Additional Guidelines for Electronic Sources
In general, electronic or online sources are cited just like print resources in references cited in the
text. However, there are some exceptions since these type sources often do not include authors or
If a work is paginated, cite the source as you would a print source.
Include in the parenthetical reference the first item that appears in the corresponding Work Cited
entry. Some examples are website name, film name, or author name.
sites are anonymous. Cite the author’s name
or sponsor if available. If the author is
unknown, use the source’s title (or a shortened version of the title).
If you must list the website name in the signal phrase that appears before a quote in your text,
do not include URL addresses in-
text. Provide partial URL’s, like MSNBC.com no
Since many web sources do not have page numbers, leave that portion of the citation blank.
Do not use page numbers assigned by the printer. Sources that are PDF files have page
numbers that are stable and should be included in the parenthetical reference.
If you cite an electronic publication that has no pagination or other type of reference, MLA
recommends that you reference the source in the text, rather than in a parenthetical reference.