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Modern Languages Association (MLA) MLA 2009 Formatting and Style Guide.

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Presentation on theme: "Modern Languages Association (MLA) MLA 2009 Formatting and Style Guide."— Presentation transcript:

1 Modern Languages Association (MLA) MLA 2009 Formatting and Style Guide

2 MLA General Format MLA style specifies guidelines for formatting. It is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. MLA style also provides writers with a system for referencing their sources through parenthetical citation in their essays and Works Cited pages. The use of MLA style can protect writers from accusations of plagiarism.

3 Paper Format General Guidelines Use a computer and print on standard, white 8.5 x 11 inch paper. Double-space the text of your paper (Format > Paragraph > Line Spacing > Double), and use a legible font (e.g. Times New Roman). The font size should be 12 pt. Leave only one space after periods or other punctuation marks Set 1 inch margins on all sides of the document. (This is usually pre-set) (Format > Document > Margin) Indent the first line of paragraphs by using the Tab key. (This is one half-inch from the left margin) All pages should be numbered (unless your instructor specifies otherwise) (Insert > Page Number > Top of page > Right alignment) Use italics throughout your essay for the titles of longer works and, only when absolutely necessary, providing emphasis.

4 Formatting the First Page of Your Paper Do not make a title page! In the upper left-hand corner of the first page, list your name, your instructor’s name, the course code, and the date (date, month, year). Again, be sure to use double-spaced text. Double space again and centre the title. Do not underline, italicize, or place your title in quotation marks. Double space between the title and the first line of the text. Create a header (View > Header/Footer) in the upper right-hand corner that includes your last name, followed by a space with a page number; number all pages consecutively with Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, etc).

5 In-Text Citations: The Basics MLA uses parenthetical citations (citations in parentheses). Parenthetical citations direct readers to the full bibliographic citations listed in the Works Cited, located at the end of the document. The way you format parenthetical citations depends on the medium (e.g. Print, Web, DVD, etc) When you directly quote the works of others in your paper, you will format quotations differently depending on their length. Following are some basic guidelines for incorporating quotations into your paper. Please note that all pages in MLA should be double spaced.

6 Short Quotations To indicate short quotations (fewer than four typed lines of prose or three lines of verse) in your text, –Enclose the quotations within double quotation marks. –Provide the author and specific page number - e.g. (Lee 9) –In the case of verse (poetry) provide line numbers - e.g. (Plath 4-6) –In the case of Shakespeare provide Act, Scene, Line numbers - e.g. (Shakespeare 1.2.12-14) Include a complete reference on the Works Cited page.

7 Short Quotations Punctuation marks such as periods, commas, and semicolons should appear after the parenthetical citation. –E.g. According to some, dreams express “profound aspects of personality,” though others disagree (Foulkes 184). Question marks and exclamation points should appear within the quotation marks if they are part of the quoted passage. –E.g. Foulkes asks, “do dreams express our personalities?” (Foulkes 184). If question marks or exclamation points are not part of the quoted text, they come after the quotation marks. –E.g. Is it possible that dreams may express “profound aspects of personality” (184)?

8 Long Quotations For quotations that are four or more lines of verse or prose: –Place quotations in a free-standing block of text and omit any quotation marks. –Start the quotation on a new line, with the entire quote indented one inch from the left margin; maintain double- spacing. –Only indent the first line of the quotation by a half inch if you are citing multiple paragraphs. –Your parenthetical citation should come after the closing punctuation mark.

9 Adding or Omitting Words in Quotations If you add a word or words in a quotation, you should put brackets around the words to indicate that they are not part of the original text. If you omit a word or words from a quotation, you should indicate the deleted word or words by using ellipsis marks, which are three periods (…) preceded and followed by a space. –E.g. In an essay on urban legends, Jan Harold Brunvand notes that “some individuals make a point of learning every recent rumor or tale … and in a short time a lively exchange of details occurs” (Brunvand 78). Please note that brackets are not needed around ellipses unless adding brackets would clarify your use of ellipses.

10 Works Cited Page: Basic Format According to MLA style, you must have a Works Cited page at the end of your paper. All entries in the Works Cited page must correspond to the works cited in your main text.

11 Works Cited NOT a Bibliography!!! Begin your Works Cited page on a separate page at the end of your paper. It should have the same one-inch margins and last name, page number header as the rest of your paper. Label the page Works Cited (do not italicize the words Works Cited, put them in quotes or add the word “Page” to the end) and centre the words Works Cited at the top of the page. Double space all citations, but do not skip spaces between entries. Indent the second and subsequent lines of citations five spaces so that you create a hanging indent. List page numbers of sources efficiently, when needed. If you refer to a journal article that appeared on pages 225 through 250, list the page numbers on your Works Cited page as 225-50.

12 Capitalization and Punctuation Capitalize the first letter of each word in the titles of plays, books, etc. but do not capitalize the first letter of conjunctions or prepositions unless one is the first word of the title or subtitle. –E.g. Gone with the Wind, The Art of War, There is Nothing Left to Lose Use italics (instead of underlining) for titles of larger works (books, magazines) and quotation marks for titles of shorter works (poems, articles)

13 Listing Author Names Entries are listed by author name (or, for entire edited collections, editor names). Author names are written last name first; middle names or middle initials follow the first name. –E.g. Burke, Kenneth C. Do not list titles (Dr., Sir, Saint, etc.) or degrees (PhD, MA DDS, etc.) with names.

14 Citation Format - Books and Plays Authors Name. Title of Literature. City of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Type of Publication. –E.g. Shakespeare, William. Romeo and Juliet. Toronto: Harcourt Canada, 2001. Print. Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. Toronto: Penguin Books, 1982. Print.

15 More than one work by an author If you have cited more than one work by a particular author, order the entries alphabetically by title, and use three hyphens in place of the author’s name for every entry after the first. –E.g. Burke, Kenneth C. A Grammar of Motives. […] ---. A Rhetoric of Motives. [..]

16 Works Cited Page: Web Web Source Format: Editor, author, or compiler name (if available). “Article Name.” Name of Site. Version number. Name of institution/organization affiliated with the site (sponsor or publisher). Date of last update. Medium of publication. Date of access. For Example: Bernstein, Mark. “10 Tips on Writing the Living Web.” A List Apart: For People Who Make Websites. A List Apart Mag., 16 Aug. 2002. Web. 4 May 2009. Felluga, Dino. Guide to Literary and Critical Theory. Purdue U, 28 Nov. 2003. Web. 10 May 2006. “How to Make Vegetarian Chilli.” eHow, n.d. Web. 24 Feb. 2009.

17 Other general guidelines : Do not use contractions in your writing. i.e. Can’t = cannot, don’t = do not, etc. Do not use numerals, write the word. i.e. 9 = nine, 100 = one hundred, etc. Do not use abbreviations or short forms. i.e. Tues. = Tuesday, ‘cause = because Use third person, not first person. i.e. Don’t use our, my, I believe, etc.; Do use they, them, people, etc. Use present tense not past tense. i.e. Romeo killed Tybalt = Romeo kills Tybalt

18 For Further Information… owl/resource/747/01/

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