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A guide to MLA referencing style for Murdoch University students and staff

MLA Style Updated!

Please note that this guide has been modified to reflect updates to MLA referencing style published in in the MLA Handbook (8th ed., 2016):

"We release new editions of the MLA Handbook when developments in scholarly research and writing call for changes in MLA style. The eighth edition brings one of our greatest shifts ever and, we believe, will serve the needs of students, teachers and scholars today and in the coming years" -- Rosemary G. Feal, Executive Director, Modern Language Association

About MLA Style

There are two parts to referencing: the citations within the text of your paper and the works cited list at the end of your paper.

The aim of the MLA style is to be brief and to provide only as much detail as is necessary to identify the work cited and the location of the information in that work. The flow of the text should not be interrupted.

Use only the surname of the author(s) followed by the page, chapter or section numbers if you need to be specific:

No distinction is made between books, journal articles, internet documents or other formats except for electronic documents that do not provide page numbers. In this case use the paragraph number, if available, with the abbreviation par.

The full details of the source are given in a works cited list at the end of the document.

References in the Works Cited list contain all of the information that someone needs to locate your source and are arranged alphabetically by author:


See Works Cited List Entries or All Examples for details on how to construct references for specific resources such as books, journals and web pages.

Important Information

Created July 2010; modified July 2017

When using EndNote referencing software, please use the following output style - MLA. For information about EndNote, please see the EndNote Guide.

Please remember to check with your unit co-ordinator or tutor before submitting your assignments, as their style preference may vary from the guidelines presented here.


This LibGuide follows the principles and examples given in the MLA Handbook (8th ed., 2016) and the MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing (3rd ed., 2008).