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Write it, Cite it!

Write It, Cite It : An MLA style sheet for students in the Sheldon Independent School District

  • Click here for the Write it, Cite it Booklet
  • Click here for Andy Spinks MLA Guide



A student should list all sources quoted and paraphrased in preparing a research paper. This documentation is required in order to give credit to the original author. This is frequently referred to as Works Cited and is added at the end of the research paper.

Using words or ideas in your paper, either by paraphrasing or copying word for word without documentation is considered a form of stealing called plagiarism. Examples of Works Cited entries recognized by the Modern Language Association (MLA) are included in this publication. 

Tips to Avoid Plagiarism

  • Do not cut and paste from the Internet.
  • Paraphrase and put information into your own words, and cite it! 
  • Put direct quotes within quotation marks, and cite it! 
  • Keep careful notes that distinguish between your own thoughts and the material that you have gathered from other sources. 


General Rules

  1. At the end of a research paper, create a Works Cited by listing all sources quoted or paraphrased in preparing the paper.
  2. Generally, each citation includes the author (if given), the title, the place of publication, the publisher, the year of publication, and additional information if needed. 
  3. List all sources for Works Cited in alphabetical order according to the author’s last name or by title (if there is no author). 
  4. Double space every line of Works Cited. 
  5. The first line of the citation is not indented, but every other line under it is indented ½”. This is called a hanging indention. 
  6. Pay close attention to spacing and punctuation for each entry. 
  7. Single space after each punctuation mark. 
  8. Use the most recent year for publication. 
  9. Abbreviations may be used in the list; always use accepted forms when abbreviating. 
  10. Place the entire title in italics not including the period that follows the title. 
  11. Use URLs “as supplementary information only when the reader cannot locate the source or instructor requires it” (MLA 182). Shorten the URL by giving the address of the main website only. 
  12. When source does not indicate information,  use the following abbreviations (179):


  • n.p. (no place of publication given)
  • n.p. (no publisher given)
  • n.d. (no date given)
  • n. pag. (no pagination given )

 MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 7th ed.  New York:  Modern Language Association, 2009. Print.