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Shapiro Library

MLA Style: Basics

This guide is intended to help you cite sources in MLA style, avoid plagiarism, learn what MLA style is and includes, find examples of MLA style, lead you to campus resources that can help you cite sources in MLA, and more.

No Known Author

IMPORTANT! See note about the hanging indent requirement on the left-bottom of the page.


General Format

("Shortened Article Title" page#)


(Shortened Book Title page#)


For Example

("Spies" 100)


(Conduct Library Research 312-315)


Corresponding Works Cited entries

“The Spies of the American Revolution.” Journal of Spy History, vol. 21, no. 2, Spring 2017, pp. 82-103.

How to Conduct Library Research. Shapiro Library Press, 1993.

See notes ¹, ², ³


¹ If the resource has a corporate author (government body, organization, etc.) use that entity as the author. 

² If the corporate author is also the publisher, list the corporate entity as the publisher and skip the author and begin with the resource’s title.

³ According to the MLA Style Center if a resource doesn’t have an author do not use “Anonymous,” instead use the title of the resource.  In in-text citations, use a shortened title of the work in place of an author's name. Place the title in quotation marks if it's a short work (such as an article) or italicize it if it's a longer work (e.g. plays, books, television shows, entire Web sites) and provide a page number.