Referencing Guide

Vancouver Referencing Style


Vancouver is a numbered referencing style commonly used in medicine and science, and consists of:

  • citations to someone else's work in the text, indicated by the use of a number
  • a sequentially numbered reference list at the end of the document providing full details of the corresponding in-text reference

It follows rules established by the International committee of Medical Journal Editors, now maintained by the U.S. National Library of Medicine. It is also known as Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts submitted to Biomedical Journals.

This guide is modeled on Citing Medicine: The NLM Style Guide for Authors, Editors, and Publishers (2nd edition). You may wish to consult this source directly for additional information or examples.

Printing this guide: Please note printing directly from pages in this guide may alter the citation formatting display. A printable document is available below.  Note that this document is adapted from this online guide and does not contain all information and examples. Please use it in conjunction with the online guide which is more regularly updated.

Reference Lists

Please check with your faculty for any specific referencing or formatting requirements

  • References are listed in numerical order, and in the same order in which they are cited in text. The reference list appears at the end of the paper.
  • Begin your reference list on a new page and title it 'References.'
  • The reference list should include all and only those references you have cited in the text. (However, do not include unpublished items such as correspondence).
  • Use Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9).
  • Check the reference details against the actual source - you are indicating that you have read a source when you cite it.
  • Be consistent with your referencing style across the document.


  • O'Campo P, Dunn JR, editors. Rethinking social epidemiology: towards a science of change. Dordrecht: Springer; 2012. 348 p.
  • Schiraldi GR. Post-traumatic stress disorder sourcebook: a guide to healing, recovery, and growth [Internet]. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2000 [cited 2006 Nov 6]. 446 p. Available from: DOI: 10.1036/0737302658
  • Halpen-Felsher BL, Morrell HE. Preventing and reducing tobacco use. In: Berlan ED, Bravender T, editors. Adolescent medicine today: a guide to caring for the adolescent patient [Internet]. Singapore: World Scientific Publishing Co.; 2012 [cited 2012 Nov 3]. Chapter 18. Available from:​10.1142/9789814324496_0018
  • Stockhausen L, Turale S. An explorative study of Australian nursing scholars and contemporary scholarship. J Nurs Scholarsh [Internet]. 2011 Mar [cited 2013 Feb 19];43(1):89-96. Available from:
  • Kanneganti P, Harris JD, Brophy RH, Carey JL, Lattermann C, Flanigan DC. The effect of smoking on ligament and cartilage surgery in the knee: a systematic review. Am J Sports Med [Internet]. 2012 Dec [cited 2013 Feb 19];40(12):2872-8. Available from: DOI: 10.1177/0363546512458223
  • Subbarao M. Tough cases in carotid stenting [DVD]. Woodbury (CT): Cine-Med, Inc.; 2003. 1 DVD: sound, color, 4 3/4 in.
  • Stem cells in the brain [television broadcast]. Catalyst. Sydney: ABC; 2009 Jun 25.

OSCOLA: Quick Reference Guide

Primary Sources: General principles

  • Put the footnote marker at the end of a sentence, unless it relates to a specific word or phrase.
  • OSCOLA uses little punctuation; no full stops in abbreviations or between initials in author’s names.
  • Close footnotes with a full stop. Use semi-colons to separate multiple citations for a single footnote.
  • If citing legislation and case law for a single proposition, put the legislation before the cases, separated by a semi-colon. If citing primary and secondary sources for a single proposition, put the primary sources before the secondary sources.
  • If a case is unreported but has a neutral citation, give that. If an unreported case does not have a neutral citation (which will always be the case before 2001), give the court and the date of the judgment in brackets after the name of the case. There is no need to add the word ‘unreported’.
  • Pre-1865, if a judgment is reprinted in the English Reports, give the citations of both the original report and the English Reports reprint, separated by a comma.
  • If a case has a European Case Law Identifier (ECLI), insert it after the case name followed by a comma and the law report citation (if there is one). For unreported cases, use the ECLI.
  • If the name of a case is given in the text, it is not necessary to repeat it in the footnote, see:
  • When citing legislation, if all the source detail is in the text, there’s no need for a footnote at all, see:
  • Where the text does not include the name of the Act or the relevant section, use a footnote, see:
  • Statutes are split into parts (pt/pts), sections (s/ss), subsections (sub-s/sub-ss), paragraphs (para/paras), subparagraphs (subpara/subparas) and may have additional schedules (sch/schs). Statutory Instruments also use regulations (reg/regs), rules (r/rr) and articles (art/ats).
  • If a subsequent citation is in the footnote immediately following the full citation, use ‘ibid’. Used alone, ‘ibid’ means ‘in the very same place’ while ‘ibid 345’ means ‘in the same work, but this time at page 345’. If there are other footnotes in between the original footnote and the next time the source is cited, use a shortened version of the case name with a cross-citation in brackets to the footnote with the full citation (n). For legislation, indicate the short form at the end of the first full citation and use this in subsequent citations.

Harvard Referencing: Guide

Harvard is a style of referencing, primarily used by university students, to cite information sources.

  1. In-text citations are used when directly quoting or paraphrasing a source. They are located in the body of the work and contain a fragment of the full citation.

    Depending on the source type, some Harvard Reference in-text citations may look something like this:

    "After that I lived like a young rajah in all the capitals of Europe…" (Fitzgerald, 2004).

  2. Reference Lists are located at the end of the work and display full citations for sources used in the assignment.

    Here is an example of a full citation for a book found in a Harvard Reference list:

    Fitzgerald, F. (2004). The great Gatsby. New York: Scribner.

Harvard Reference List Overview

Reference lists are created to allow readers to locate original sources themselves. Each citation in a reference list includes various pieces of information including the:

Reference lists are created to allow readers to locate original sources themselves. Each citation in a reference list includes various pieces of information including the:

  1. Name of the author(s)
  2. Year published
  3. Title
  4. City published
  5. Publisher
  6. Pages used

Generally, Harvard Reference List citations follow this format:

  • Last name, First Initial. (Year published). Title. City: Publisher, Page(s).

Citations are listed in alphabetical order by the author’s last name. If there are multiple sources by the same author, then citations are listed in order by the date of publication.

If you’d like more information about Harvard Reference Lists, visit Anglia Ruskin University’s guide

Harvard Reference List Citations for Books with One Author

The structure for a Harvard Reference List citation for books with one author includes the following:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Title. Edition. (Only include the edition if it is not the first edition) City published: Publisher, Page(s).

If the edition isn’t listed, it is safe to assume that it is the first addition, and does not need to be included in the citation.

Example: One author AND first edition:

  • Patterson, J. (2005). Maximum ride. New York: Little, Brown.

Example: One author AND NOT the first edition

  • Dahl, R. (2004). Charlie and the chocolate factory. 6th ed. New York: Knopf.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Books with Two or More Authors

Don’t forget, Cite This For Me allows you to generate Harvard References for books quickly and accurately.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Books with Two or More Authors

When creating a citation that has more than one author, place the names in the order in which they appear on the source. Use the word “and” to separate the names.

  • Last name, First initial. and Last name, First initial. (Year published). Title. City: Publisher, Page(s).


  • Desikan, S. and Ramesh, G. (2006). Software testing. Bangalore, India: Dorling Kindersley, p.156.
  • Vermaat, M., Sebok, S., Freund, S., Campbell, J. and Frydenberg, M. (2014). Discovering computers. Boston: Cengage Learning, pp.446-448.
  • Daniels, K., Patterson, G. and Dunston, Y. (2014). The ultimate student teaching guide. 2nd ed. Los Angeles: SAGE Publications, pp.145-151.

* remember, when citing a book, only include the edition if it is NOT the first edition!

Don’t forget, Cite This For Me allows you to generate Harvard References for books quickly and accurately.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Chapters in Edited Books

When citing a chapter in an edited book, use the following format:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Chapter title. In: First initial. Last name, ed., Book Title, 1st ed.* City: Publisher, Page(s).
  • Bressler, L. (2010). My girl, Kylie. In: L. Matheson, ed., The Dogs That We Love, 1st ed. Boston: Jacobson Ltd., pp. 78-92.

* When citing a chapter in an edited book, the edition is displayed, even when it is the first edition.

Don’t forget, Cite This For Me allows you to generate Harvard References for books quickly and accurately.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Multiple Works By The Same Author

When there are multiple works by the same author, place the citations in order by year. When sources are published in the same year, place them in alphabetical order by the title.


  • Brown, D. (1998). Digital fortress. New York: St. Martin's Press.
  • Brown, D. (2003). Deception point. New York: Atria Books.
  • Brown, D. (2003). The Da Vinci code. New York: Doubleday.

Don’t forget, Cite This For Me allows you to generate Harvard References for books quickly and accurately.

If you need clarification, Anglia Ruskin University has additional information.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Print Journal Articles

The standard structure of a print journal citation includes the following components:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Article title. Journal, Volume (Issue), Page(s).


  • Ross, N. (2015). On Truth Content and False Consciousness in Adorno’s Aesthetic Theory. Philosophy Today, 59(2), pp. 269-290.
  • Dismuke, C. and Egede, L. (2015). The Impact of Cognitive, Social and Physical Limitations on Income in Community Dwelling Adults With Chronic Medical and Mental Disorders. Global Journal of Health Science, 7(5), pp. 183-195.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Journal Articles Found on a Database or on a Website

When citing journal articles found on a database or through a website, include all of the components found in a citation of a print journal, but also include the medium ([online]), the website URL, and the date that the article was accessed.


  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Article Title. Journal, [online] Volume(Issue), pages. Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].


  • Raina, S. (2015). Establishing Correlation Between Genetics and Nonresponse. Journal of Postgraduate Medicine, [online] Volume 61(2), p. 148. Available at: [Accessed 8 Apr. 2015].

Harvard Reference List Citations for Print Newspaper Articles

When citing a newspaper, use the following structure:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Article title. Newspaper, Page(s).


  • Weisman, J. (2015). Deal Reached on Fast-Track Authority for Obama on Trade Accord. The New York Times, p.A1.

Harvard Reference List Citations for Newspaper Articles Found on a Database or a Website

To cite a newspaper found either on a database or a website, use the following structure:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Article title. Newspaper, [online] pages. Available at: url [Accessed Day Mo. Year]


  • Harris, E. (2015). For Special-Needs Students, Custom Furniture Out of Schoolhouse Scraps. New York Times, [online] p.A20. Available at: [Accessed 17 Apr. 2015].

Harvard Reference List Citations for eBooks and PDFs

When citing eBooks and PDFs, include the edition, even if it’s the first edition, and follow it with the type of resource in brackets (either [ebook] or [pdf]). Include the url at the end of the citation with the date it was accessed in brackets.

Use the following structure:

  • Last name, First initial. (Year published). Article title. Magazine, (Volume), Page(s).

Available at: URL [Accessed Day Mo. Year].

  • Zusack, M. (2015). The Book Thief. 1st ed. [ebook] New York: Knopf. Available at: [Accessed 20 Apr. 2015].
  • Robin, J. (2014). A handbook for professional learning: research, resources, and strategies for implementation. 1st ed. [pdf] New York: NYC Department of Education.
  • Available at [Accessed 14 Apr. 2015].
  • Don’t forget, Cite This For Me allows you to generate Harvard reference citations for ebooks and pdfs quickly and easily.

APA Referencing Guide

  • The American Psychological Association reference style uses the Author-Date format.
  • Refer to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) for more information.
  • When quoting directly or indirectly from a source, the source must be acknowledged in the text by author name and year of publication.
To cite information directly or indirectly, there are two ways to acknowledge citations: 1) Make it a part of a sentence or 2) put it in parentheses at the end of the sentence.
Direct quotation – use quotation marks around the quote and include page numbers
  • Cohen and Lotan (2014) argue that "many different kinds of abilities are essential for any profession" (p.151).
  • “Many different kinds of abilities are essential for any profession" (Cohen & Lotan, 2014, p.151).
  • N.B. See the Library’s APA webpage for a quotation of 40 or more words.
Indirect quotation/paraphrasing/summarising – no quotation marks
  • Professional knowledge alone does not make someone a very capable professional (Cohen & Lotan, 2014).
  • According to Cohen and Lotan (2014), professional knowledge alone does not make someone a very capable professional.
  • N.B. Page numbers are optional when paraphrasing, although it is useful to include them (Publication Manual, p. 171).
Citations from a secondary source Gould’s (1981) research “raises fundamental doubts as to whether we can continue to think of intelligence as unidimensional” (as cited in Cohen & Lotan, 2014, pp. 151-152).
  • Intelligence cannot be believed to consist of one single entity any more (Gould, 1981, as cited in Cohen & Lotan, 2014).
  • To cite a source you found in another source, you must acknowledge all the authors.
  • The author(s) of the source referred to i.e. Gould, 1981
  • The author(s) of the work which contains the original source i.e. Cohen & Lotan, 2014
  • In the reference list, only the book by Cohen & Lotan should be acknowledged. Do not list Gould.
  • At the end of your assignment, you are required to provide the full bibliographic information for each source. References must be listed in alphabetical order by author.
    In a reference list In-text citation
    1.Book with one author (King, 2000) or King (2000) compares Frame
    King, M. (2000). Wrestling with the angel: A life of Janet Frame. Auckland, New Zealand: Viking. N.B. The first letter of the first word of the main title, subtitle and all proper nouns have capital letters
    2.Book with two authors
    Dancey, C. P., & Reidy, J. (2004). Statistics without maths for psychology: Using SPSS for Windows (3rd ed.). Harlow, England: Pearson/Prentice Hall. N.B. Before “&” between authors, do not forget to put a comma. (Dancey & Reidy, 2004) or Dancey and Reidy (2004) said… When paraphrasing in text, use and, not &.
    3. Book with three to five authors (see Library APA referencing webpage for six or more authors)
    Krause, K.-L., Bochner, S., & Duchesne, S. (2006). Educational psychology for learning and teaching (2nd ed.). Melbourne, Australia: Thomson. N.B. Use & between authors’ names, except when paraphrasing in text. When a work has three, four or five authors, cite all authors the first time, and in subsequent citations include only the first author followed by et al. (Krause, Bochner, & Duchesne, 2006) then (Krause et al., 2006)
    4. Book or report by a corporate author e.g. organisation, association, government department
    International Labour Organization. (2007). Equality at work: Tackling the challenges (International Labour Conference report). Geneva, Switzerland: Author. N.B. When the author and the publisher are the same, use Author in the publisher field. In text, some group authors may be abbreviated in subsequent citations if they are readily recognisable (International Labour Organization, 2007) or (International Labour Organization [ILO], 2007), then (ILO, 2007)
    5. Book chapter in edited book
    Kestly, T. (2010). Group sandplay in elementary schools. In A. A. Drewes, & C. E. Shaefer (Eds.), School-based play therapy (2nd ed., pp. 257-282). Hoboken, NJ: John Wileys & Sons. N.B. Include the page numbers of the chapter after the book title. (Kestly, 2010) or Kestly (2010) compares educational settings of ...
    6. Conference paper online
    Bochner, S. (1996, November). Mentoring in higher education: Issues to be addressed in developing a mentoring program. Paper presented at the Australian Association for Research in Education Conference, Singapore. Retrieved from Bochner, 1996) or Bochner (1996) illustrates
    7. Course handout/Lecture notes (electronic version)
    Archard, S., Merry, R., & Nicholson, C. (2011). Karakia and waiata [Powerpoint slides]. Retrieved from TEPS757-11B (NET): Communities of Learners website: N.B. Put format in square brackets - e.g. [Lecture notes] [Panopto video]. This referencing format should be used only for your assignments (Archard, Merry, & Nicholson, 2011) then subsequently, if 3-5 authors (Archard et al., 2011)
    8. Film
    Preston, G. (Director/Producer). (2010). Home by Christmas [Motion picture]. New Zealand: Gaylene Preston Production. N.B. For films, DVDs or video recordings use [Motion picture] in square brackets. Give the country of origin and the name of the motion picture studio. (Preston, 2010)
    9. Journal article (academic/scholarly) with DOI (NEW DOI format)
    Cavenagh, N., & Ramadurai, R. (2017). On the distances between Latin squares and the smallest defining set size. Journal of Combinatorial Designs, 25(4), 147–158. N.B. DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is a unique code assigned to a scholarly/academic publication. The DOI’s code links to the article online (Cavenagh & Ramadurai, 2017) or Cavenagh and Ramadurai (2017
    9a. Journal article with no DOI Germann, F., Ebbes, P., & Grewal, R. (2015). The chief marketing officer matters! Journal of Marketing, 79(3), 1-22. N.B. Retain original punctuation of titles. A capital letter is used for key words in the journal title. The journal title and volume number are italicised, followed by the issue number in brackets (not italicised). Germann, Ebbes, and Grewal (2015) claim that “there have been …” (p. 19). then subsequently, if 3-5 authors Germann et al. (2015)
    10. Magazine – popular/trade/general interest
    Goodwin, D. K. (2002, February 4). How I caused that story. Time, 159(5), 69. N.B. Full date is used if published weekly; month and year if monthly Goodwin, D. K. (2002, February 4). How I caused that story. Time, 159(5), 69. N.B. Full date is used if published weekly; month and year if monthly
    11. Newspaper article
    Coster, D. (2017, June 12). Driver who caused man's death is placed into dementia care. Stuff. Retrieved from N.B Use the URL of the newspaper’s homepage, as a direct link to an online article in a newspaper website is not a persistent link. Coster, 2017) or Coster (2017) reports
    12. Personal Communication
    N.B. Information such as Letters, telephone conversations, emails, interviews, and private social networking is called “Personal Communication”, and no reference list entry is required (W. Bush, personal communication, March 19, 2017)
    13. Reference book – dictionary or encyclopedia entry
    Hwang, E.-G. (2002). North Korea: Economic system. In D. Levinson, & K. Christenson (Eds.), Encyclopedia of modern Asia (Vol. 4, pp. 350-353). New York, NY: Charles Scribner's Sons. N.B. If no author stated, the entry’s title takes the author position. For online dictionaries and encyclopedias, a retrieval statement takes the place of publisher location / name (Hwang, 2002) or Hwang (2002) identifies the hurdles North Korea ...
    14. Webpage
    New Zealand Trade and Enterprise. (n.d.). Agribusiness. Retrieved from N.B. (n.d.) = no date. The basic format is: (1) Author (could be organisation). (2) Date (either date of publication or latest update). (3) Title. (4) URL. (New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, n.d., para. 1) For direct quote, cite the paragraph number in text

    Chicago Referencing Guide

    The Chicago Manual of Style presents two different referencing systems:

    Chicago A (notes and a bibliography) presents bibliographic information in consecutively numbered notes, which are placed at either the foot of the page (footnotes) or at the end of an essay (endnotes). Superscript numbers in the text of the paper refer readers to the corresponding note.  A Bibliography is usually required as well, which appears at the end of the paper and gives publication information for all of the works cited in the notes.          


    This version of the style is used in the following subjects at Otago:


     Art History, History, Visual Culture, and some Politics papers.


     Chicago B (in-text Author-Date citation and a reference list) presents brief citations in the text (usually in parentheses) of the author’s last name and date of publication.  These brief citations correspond to more complete entries in a Reference List at the end of the paper.                


     This version of the style is used in the following subjects at Otago:


     English (not Linguistics), Clothing & Textile Sciences.


     This page provides links to style examples, manuals, etc. for the Chicago A (Notes and Bibliography) version of the style.  


     Please see the Chicago B tab if you are using the Chicago B (in-text citation and a reference list) version of the style.

    MLA Referencing Guide

    With the new MLA citation format, a major change was made to how full citations are created and how MLA works cited pages are formatted. Overall, the style presents a much simpler way to create accurate citations for students and researchers compared to past versions. Let’s look at the major changes:

    One standard citation format that applies to every source type

    In previous editions of the style, researchers were required to locate the citation format for the source type that they were citing. For instance, if they were trying to cite a scholarly journal article, they would have to find and reference the rules for citing journals. This has become inefficient in modern writing, however, as we are digesting information from a more broad variety of sources than ever before. With information readily available in tweets, Facebook posts, blogs, etc., it has become unrealistic for writers to create citation formats for every source type. To address this, there is now one universal format that can be used to create citations, which is displayed in MLA 8.

    To properly use this new format, the researcher is required to locate the “Core Elements” of each source used in their paper. These “core elements” are what make up the information that will populate each citation. These pieces of information can also be found in the forms in the MLA citation generator.

    The “Core Elements” of a citation, along with their corresponding punctuation marks, include the following:

    • Authors.
    • Title of the source.
    • Title of container,
    • Other contributors,
    • Version,
    • Numbers,
    • Publisher,
    • Publication date,
    • Location.

    The appropriate punctuation mark must follow each core element, unless it is the final piece. In that situation, the punctuation mark should always be a period.

    These core elements are then placed within the citation, and generally follow this format:

    Author. Title. Title of the container. Other contributors, Version, Number, Publisher’s name, Date of publication, Location

    Here is an example of how an actual citation (in this case, for a book) looks when written using the 8th edition style:

    Goodwin, Doris. Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln. Simon & Schuster, 2012.

    For more help with creating citations with these core elements, try the MLA citation maker on

    Inclusion of “containers” in citations

    When the source you are referencing is actually a small part of a larger source, such as a chapter within a book, the larger source is called the “container,” as it “contains” the smaller source. Generally, the container is italicized and is followed by a comma. For more details on this, see the examples below. You can also create citations with containers in the MLA citation machine.

    MLA citation format for citing a title within a container might look as follows:

    Source Author(s) Last Name, First Name. “Title of Source.” Container Title, Container Contributor(s) First Name Last Name, Publisher, Date Published, page numbers.

    Here is an example full citation of how to cite a book chapter using the 8th edition format:

    Uenten, Wesley Iwao. “Rising Up from a Sea of Discontent: The 1970 Koza Uprising in U.S. Occupied Okinawa.” Militarized Currents: Toward a Decolonized Future in Asia and the Pacific, edited by Setsu Shigematsu and Keith L. Camacho, University of Minnesota Press, 2010, pp. 91-124.

    The ability to use pseudonyms for author names

    In order to more efficiently create accurate citations for new source types, it is now acceptable to use online handles or screen names in place of authors’ names.


    @TwitterHandle. “Content of Tweet.” Twitter, Date, Time, URL (omit http:// or https://).


    @realDonaldTrump. “I will be having a general news conference on JANUARY ELEVENTH in N.Y.C. Thank you.” Twitter, 3 Jan. 2017, 6:58 p.m.,

    Adding the abbreviations vol. and no. to magazine and journal article citations

    In previous versions of the style, there was no indication that the numbers in periodical citations referred to the volume and issue numbers. This has changed in the 8th edition to be clearer to the reader.

    Example in MLA 7:

    O’Carol, John. “The Dying of the Epic.” Anthropoetics 30.2 (2011): 48-49. Print.

    Example in MLA 8:

    O’Carol, John. “The Dying of the Epic.” Anthropoetics, vol. 30, no. 2, 2011, pp. 48-49.

    5. Inclusion of URLS

    Unlike previous editions, the inclusion of URLs in citations is highly recommended by the 8th edition. Omit “http://” or “https://” from the URL when including it in a citation.

    6.Omitting the city of publication

    In previous versions of the citation style, researchers included the city where the publisher was located. Today, this information generally serves little purpose and the city of publication can often be omitted. It is suggested that you include the city of publication if the version of the source differs when published in a different country (example: British editions of books versus versions printed in the United States).

    7. Flexibility in citation formatting

    In addition to one universal format for all source types, the 8th edition now allows for more flexibility in citation presentation than previous versions of the style. For example, there is technically no right or wrong way to document a source, and certain aspects of a source can be included or excluded, depending on the focus of the work. For example, if you are citing the movie, Casablanca, and your research project focuses on the main character, Rick Blaine, it would be beneficial to your reader for you to include the name of the actor, Humphrey Bogart, in your citation. Other writers who instead focus on the whole movie in their paper may elect to just include the name of the director in their works cited page. To create the best and most effective citations, you always should think about which pieces of information will help readers easily locate the source you referenced themselves, should they wish to do so.]

    Formatting Guidelines

    Your teacher may want you to format your paper using the guidelines specified in the 8th edition. If you were told to create your citations in this format, your the rest of your paper should be formatted using the new MLA guidelines as well.  

    General guidelines:

    • Use white 8 ½  x 11” paper.
    • Make 1 inch margins on the top, bottom, and sides
    • The first word in every paragraph should be indented one half inch.
    • Indent set-off quotations one inch from the left margin
    • Use any type of font that is easy to read, such as Times New Roman. Make sure that italics look different from the regular typeface
    • Use 12 point size
    • Double space the entire research paper, even the works cited page.
    • Leave one space after periods and other punctuation marks, unless your instructor tells you to make two spaces.

    Page Numbers

    • Placed in the upper right-hand corner, one half inch from the top, flush with the right margin.
    • Type your last name before the page number. (To make this process easier, set your word processor to automatically add the last name and page number to each page).
    • Do not place p. before the page number.
    • Many instructors do not want a page number on the first page. Ask your instructor for their specific preferences.

    Tables and Illustrations

    • Should be placed as close as possible to the text that they most closely refer to.
    • Label tables with: “Table,” an arabic numeral, and create a title for it.
    • This information should be located above the table, flush left, on separate lines.
    • Format the title the same way as the title of the paper.
    • Underneath the table, provide the source and any notes. Notes should be labeled with a letter, rather than a numeral, so the reader is able to differentiate between the notes of the text and the notes of the table.
    • Use double spacing throughout.
    • Label illustrations with: Fig. (short for figure), assign an arabic number, and provide a caption.
    • The label and caption should appear underneath the illustration.
    • **If the table or illustration’s caption gives complete information about the source and the source isn’t cited in the text, there is no need to include the citation in the works cited page.
    • Label musical scores with: Ex. (short for Example), assign it an Arabic numeral, and provide a caption.
    • The label and caption should appear below the musical illustration.

    Use of Numerals

    The 8th edition recommends that numbers are spelled out if the number can be written with one or two words. For larger numbers, write the number itself.


    One, forty four, one hundred, 247, 2 ½, 101 If the project calls for frequent use of numbers (such as a scientific study or statistics), use numerals that precede measurements.


    247 milligrams, 5 pounds

    Here are some other formatting tips to keep in mind:

    • Do not start sentences with a numeral, spell out the number.
    • Always use numerals before abbreviations or symbols, ex. 6 lbs.
    • In divisions, use numbers, ex: In page 5 of the study

    Works Cited Lists

    The purpose of an MLA works cited list is to display the sources that were used for a project, and to give credit to the original authors of the works that were consulted for a project. Works Cited lists are typically found at the very end of a project. Citations are what make up a works cited list.

    Here are some tips on how to create a works cited list for your citations:

    Citations are listed in alphabetical order by the first word in the citation, which is typically the last name of the author.

    Each citation should have a hanging indent.

    When there are two or more sources with the same author, only include the author’s name in the first citation. In the second or subsequent citations, use three hyphens in place of the author’s name, followed by a period.


    Middlekauff, Robert. The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution. Oxford UP, 2007.

    – – -. Colonial America. Oxford UP, 1999.

    If the author is listed along with another author, type out the full name of each author, do not use the hyphens and periods.


    Sparks, Nicholas. The Notebook. Warner, 1996. —. A Walk to Remember. Warner, 1999. Two or more works by the same author:

    Example: Rosenthal, Amy Krouse, and Tom Lichtenheld. Duck! Rabbit! San Francisco: Chronicle, 2009. —. Exclamation Mark! Scholastic, 2013.

    The Works Cited list typically appears at the end of a paper.

    Make the Works Cited page the next consecutive page number. If the last page of your project is page 12, the Works Cited list will be page 13.

    An annotated bibliography is different than a Works Cited list. An annotated bibliography includes brief summaries and evaluations of the sources.

    Use one-inch margins around the page. Double-space the entire document.

    Place the title of the page (Works Cited) in the center of the page, an inch from the top.

    Create a double space between the title (Works Cited) and the first citation.

    Each citation should start on the left margin (one inch from the side of the paper).

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