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WRI 1100 -- Online Library Instruction

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Citations

In WRI 1100, you will be using the MLA citation format in your assignments. For an in-depth guide on MLA citations, feel free to use SFC Library's Citation Guide here.

 

What is MLA format?

The Modern Language Association is an organization that was created to develop guidelines on everything language and literature related. They have guidelines on proper grammar usage and research paper layouts. In addition, they have English and foreign language committees, numerous books and journal publications, and an annual conference. They are not connected with this guide but the information here reflects the association’s rules for formatting papers and citations.

Why Use MLA?

Using MLA Style properly makes it easier for readers to navigate and comprehend a text through familiar cues that refer to sources and borrowed information. Editors and instructors also encourage everyone to use the same format so there is consistency of style within a given field. Abiding by MLA's standards as a writer will allow you to:

  • Provide your readers with cues they can use to follow your ideas more efficiently and to locate information of interest to them
  • Allow readers to focus more on your ideas by not distracting them with unfamiliar or complicated formatting
  • Establish your credibility or ethos in the field by demonstrating an awareness of your audience and their needs as fellow researchers (particularly concerning the citing of references)

Who Should Use MLA?

MLA Style is typically reserved for writers and students preparing manuscripts in various humanities disciplines such as:

  • English Studies - Language and Literature
  • Foreign Languages and Literatures
  • Literary Criticism
  • Comparative Literature
  • Cultural Studies

MLA Formatting and Notation Style

You should start by becoming familiar with the general formatting requirements of MLA Style, as well as the different standards for notation that MLA writers are expected to use. Because MLA is different than other writing styles, such as APA, you should pay attention to every detail of the Style, from general paper layout to abbreviations. 

Credits

This guide was based on the The Complete Guide to MLA & Citations created by Citation Machine and the MLA Citation Guides created by the Online Writing Lab at Perdue University.