Dr. Karen Palmer and Dr. Sandi Van Lieu

MLA: Works Cited

In an MLA paper, the sources are listed at the end of the paper on the Works Cited page. Sources should be in alphabetical order by author’s last name or the title if there is no author.

The formatting for Works Cited entries generally follows this pattern:

Author. Title of Source. Title of Container (self contained if a book), Other contributors (translators or editors), Version (edition), Number (vol. and/or no.), Publisher, Publication date, Location (pages, paragraphs, URL, or DOI). 2nd container’s title, other contributors, version, number, publisher, publication date, location, date of access (if applicable).

A “container” is a larger work that a source is found within. For example:

  • When citing a chapter in a book, the name of the chapter would be the title of the source and the name of the book would be the title of the container.
  • Another example might be a page on a website. The page is the source, and the website is the container.
  • An article in a newspaper would be the source, and the newspaper would be the container.

Since the items needed for each source doesn’t change, citing every type of source is the same. If one of the items needed is missing or doesn’t exist, just skip it.



**Important note: If there is no publication date on the website, then you need to include the “Accessed” date, which is the date you accessed the website. See the example directly above (Words Cited: Website with author in MLA).


Type of Source



Gleick, James. Chaos: Making a New Science. Penguin, 1987.


Short Story/Article from a Book  

Cisneros, Sandra. “Eleven.” Exploring Literature Writing and Arguing About Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and the Essay, edited by Frank Madden, Longman, 2016, pp. 26-28.


Article from a Magazine  

Sanders, Scott Russell. “Under the Influence: Paying the Price of My Father’s Booze.” Harper’s, Nov. 1989, pp. 68-75.


Article from a Database  

Solomon, Diana. “Anne Finch, Restoration Playwright.” Trudeau, Lawrence J. Poetry Criticism, vol. 156, Gale, 2014. Literature Criticism Online, doi:10.6493/tdg.20524. Accessed 10 Apr. 2019. Originally published in Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature, vol. 30, no. 1, 2011, pp. 37-56.


Entire Website  

Your Child Learns. Owl and Mouse Educational Software, 2003, http://www.yourchildlearns.com/. Accessed 29 July 2011.


Article/Blog Post on a Website  

Morin, Amy. “Mom Am I Fat?: Helping Your Teen Have a Positive Body Image.” Very Well Family, 18 Jan. 2019, verywellfamily.com/media-and-teens-body-image. Accessed 12 May 2019.


A Film  

The Empire Strikes Back. Directed by George Lucas, performances by Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher, Twentieth Century Fox, 1980.


YouTube Video  

McGonigal, Jane. “Gaming and Productivity.” YouTube, uploaded by Big Think, 3 July 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkdzy9bWW3E.


Yelp/Social Media Posts  

B., Elizabeth. “Olsen’s Grain.” Yelp, 4 Oct. 2016, yelp.com/biz/olsens-grain-prescott. Accessed 10 Oct. 2019.


Click Here for a great guide for MLA citation creation.


Sample Works Cited



  • Content created by Dr. Karen Palmer and licensed CC BY NC SA.
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MLA Style: Works Cited Page Copyright © 2023 by Dr. Karen Palmer and Dr. Sandi Van Lieu is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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