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MLA 9th Edition : In-Text Citations

Library guide to support MLA 9th edition.

Gateway Libraries

MLA 9th ed. Template and Guide

The Gateway Libraries recommend that students consult their course syllabus and assignment details for any course specifics and additional faculty requirements. 

In-Text Citations: Summary Of MLA 9th ed. Style

When you are incorporating someone else's thoughts, ideas, or words in your writing, use an in-text citation to give credit to the author. The goal of an in-text citation is to direct readers to the corresponding citation on the works cited list at the end of the paper.

In MLA citation style, in-text citations include the first element from the Works Cited entry, which is usually the author's first name but when there isn't a listed author can be an abbreviated title and the location which is usually the page number but can be a book chapter or time stamp. The location should be as specific as possible. 

Basic MLA 9th ed. In-Text Citations

Basic MLA In-Text Citation Styles  

If you quote, paraphrase or summarize a source in your paper, it needs to be cited in the text as well as on the Works Cited page. 

Author Type

In-Text Citation


No author / anonymous with page numbers

Use a shortened title of the work following the same format as the Works Cited entry; in quotes or italics. Exclude initials articles (a, an, the). Titles can be abbreviated if it is clear which title on the Works Cited page you are referring to. 

("Digital" 184). 
(Epic 56).

1 author with page numbers

Author’s last name and page number in parenthesis.
Place the period outside the parenthesis.

(Seneca 44).
(Seneca 44-45)

2 authors

Include both last names in the in-text citation, connected by and followed by the page number in parenthesis.

(Perkins and Jackson 63)

3 or more authors

Include the first listed author’s last name followed by et al. and the page number in parenthesis. 

(Kalir et al. 144)

Author mentioned in the sentence.

If you use a signal phrase or mention the author in the sentence, include the page number(s) in parenthesis. You don't have to repeat the author's name. 

According to Casey, there is no evidence to support this claim (12).

More detailed guidance on in-text citations can be found in the following resources: 

MLA, In-Text Citations: An Overview 
Purdue OWL, MLA In-Text Citations
Spartanburg Community College Library, In-Text Citations Handout

Adapted from content created by Spartanburg Community College Library