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MLA In-Text Citation: Comprehensive Guide with Examples

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MLA in-text citation is essential for referencing your assignment at a higher level of studies. Citations help to maintain uniformity of references while giving the due credit to the source. Hence, learning how to cite an article in MLA in-text format is highly imperative for preserving the authenticity of your work.

Understanding MLA In-Text Citation

In MLA style, an in-text citation is written with the author’s surname and the page number to give credit for the borrowed information. Such miniature versions guide you to the complete reference list at the end of the paper. For example: (Freud 179). If there’s no page number available for the source, don’t include it in the parenthetical citation: (Freud).

Two essential tips to remember while doing MLA Format in-text citation:

  • Every source that you have cited in your work should be in the reference page, and
  • Every source that you included in your reference page must be cited somewhere in your text.

If you are wondering what does an MLA in-text citation for various sources look like, read on to find out.

An In-Text Citation in MLA Style Example

What does an MLA in-text citation look like? Here’ an in-text citation in MLA style example for you to understand better:

A group of scholars from Harvard’s linguistics department has developed workshops to train the native speakers and enhance their ability to comprehend accented dialect (Darwin et al. 147; Peterson 17). Darwin and his team conducted the study and carried out the training with individuals aiming to be social works, but also note that the professionals who work in this program with non-native speakers could also benefit. (175)


Darwin, Collin M., et al. “Teaching the Natives to Understand Foreign-accented Speech.” Journal of Linguistic and Cultural Development, vol. 19, no. 6, 1999, pp. 146-176.

Peterson, Jonny D. A Guide to Improving Listeners’ Comprehension of Non-native Dialect. The University of Denver, Boulder, 1999

Using MLA In-Text Citation for Print Sources

MLA in-text citation for books, magazines, journals, newspapers, and other print sources, you must provide the author’s last name and a page number.

  • For referencing a book in-text citation in MLA style with one author:
  • Format: Author’s Last Name, Author’s First Name. Title of the Book. Name of the Publisher. Publication, date.

    Example: Johnson, Peter. A Journey to the Horizon. Harper’s Black, 2001

    • For referencing a book in-text citation in MLA style with two authors:

    Format: First Author’s Last Name, First Author’s First Name, and Second Author’s First Name Second Author’s Last Name. “Title of the Article.” Title of Container (journal), vol. number, no. number, Publication date, Location (pp. page numbers).

    Example: Dickson, George, Henry M. “Evolution of English Language.” Journal of Multilingual Development, vol. 5, no. 2, 1987, London (pp. 112-129).

    • For referencing a book in-text citation in MLA style with multiple authors:

    When you are doing in-text citation with multiple authors in MLA style, reverse the first author’s name and follow it with et al. (Latin for “and others”):

    Format: First Author’s Last Name, First Author’s First Name, et al. Title of Book. Name of the Publisher, Publication date.

    Example: Adler, Benjamin, et al. Children’s Big Book of Stories. Orange Publishing House, 2002.

    • MLA in-text citation with no author:

    How to cite an article with no author in MLA in-text Format? If the source has no author, mention the short version of the title in quotations instead of the author’s name.

    Example: North America has the highest number of global warming hotspots as the region is easily accessible to the impacts of environmental change. (“Impact of Global Warming”).

    Format: The Impact of Global Warming in North America.” Global Warming: Early Signs. 2001. Accessed 19 Mar. 2001.

    • MLA format in-text citation for multivolume work:

    To cite an entire volume, add a comma after writing the author’s name and mention the column number (John, Vol.3). For citing one from several volumes, add volume and page numbers (John, 3:112)

    Example: In 1800, Lewis Brigade let his students call their classrooms a rabbit hole, a made-up concept from Alice in Wonderland (Fouke 2:257)

    • In-text citation for authors with the same name:

    For authors with the same last name, write first initial of their names to clarify.

    Example: Despite all scientific innovations (K. Danley 203), medical errors continue to hit the ceiling (D. Danley 2)

    • In-text citation in MLA style for more than one work by the same author:

    If you list includes more than one work by the same author, add a short version of the title for citing.

    Example: One writer says, “Art, especially great art must engage in the nervous system” (Harris, Art for soul 43)

    • In-text citation for edited books:

    If it is a revised edition, include the number, name, or year of the edition and the abbreviation “ed.” after the book title. Write “Revised ed.” for a revised edition and “Abridged ed.” for abridged edition.

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name, editor. Title of Book. Numbered ed., Publisher, Year published.

    Example 1: Ferraro, Jack, and Susan Gilli, editors. Applied Perspective to Adulthood. Abridged ed., Engage in Learning, 2011.

    Example 2: Smith, John. The Sample Paper Book for grammar. Revised ed., Language For Us, 2012.

    • In-text Citations for Magazines:

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of the Article.” Magazine Name, vol. number, issue no., publication date, page numbers.

    Example: Paul, Samantha. “A Feast of Easter.” Book of Festival, vol. 1, 11, Oct. 2007, p. 5.

    How to Cite a Quote in MLA?

    For citing a quotation, you have directly used from a source, write the quoted section in quotation marks. Include an MLA in-text citation at the end of your quote with the author’s name and the page number.

    Example: “Children who are raised far from home without the love and affection of a mother were deficient in showing emotions and lacked personality development” (Violet 38).

    For cases when you quote from sources where the page number is unavailable like web pages, simply write the author’s name.

    Example: “Four phases of the separation include anger, protest, sadness, and detachment” (Gemini).

    Basic Formatting of MLA In-Text Citation for Online Sources

    “How do you do an in-text citation for a website?”- is a common query of most students today. The internet plays a vital role for students to gather information for their assignments. Hence, you must learn how to in-text cite a website from which you have collected relevant details.

    • MLA in-text citation for the entire website with an author:

    Example: The role of Parents is unparalleled in the upbringing of a child and fighting bullies (Faulkner).

    Format: Faulkner, Sheryl. Parents & Child. Journal for Parenting, 2013,

    • MLA in-text citation for the entire website with no author:

    Example: The term Jabberwock was coined by Lewis Carroll in the book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in 1865 (“Great Children’s Books)

    Format: “Great Children’s Books.” About Fairy Tales. Children’s Weekly Journal, 2001,

    • MLA in-text citation for Online Journals:

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of Journal Article.” Title of Journal, vol. number, issue no., date, page range. Website Name, URL or DOI.

    Example: Sanders, Van. “The Strategies for Developing Comprehension Skills of College Students.” Developmental of a Student’s Education, vol. 17, no. 1, Spring 2007, pp. 34-46. Star Kids,

    • MLA In-text Citations for online Newspapers:

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of the Article.” Title of Newspaper’s Website, publication date, URL (Don’t forget to remove http:// or https:// while citing).

    Example: Wolman, Jack. “Fighting for the silent heroes: Duty Dogs.” New York Tribune, 5 Jan. 2011, p. 11.

    • MLA In-text Citations for Online Magazines:

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name. “Title of the Article.” Magazine’s name, vol. number, issue no., date of publication, page numbers or URL.

    Example: Gars, Kailey. “How to Buy Sustainable Sweeteners.” Healthy Eating, no. 8, Dec. 2013, pp. 66-77. Homestar,

    • In-text Citations for e-books:

    Format: Author’s Last name, First name. Title of E-Book. Publisher, year published. Title of Website, URL.

    Example: Rodgers, Tim. The Symphony of Music and Sound. Harper’s Deck, 2010. Music for Soul,

    Looking for more MLA in-text citation for Website Examples?

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    Hi, I am Mark, a Literature writer by profession. Fueled by a lifelong passion for Literature, story, and creative expression, I went on to get a PhD in creative writing. Over all these years, my passion has helped me manage a publication of my write ups in prominent websites and e-magazines. I have also been working part-time as a writing expert for for 5+ years now. It’s fun to guide students on academic write ups and bag those top grades like a pro. Apart from my professional life, I am a big-time foodie and travel enthusiast in my personal life. So, when I am not working, I am probably travelling places to try regional delicacies and sharing my experiences with people through my blog. 

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