Skip to main content

Citing Sources: Books - MLA

This guide indicates the appropriate form for layout, in-text citations, and bibliography for MLA, APA, and Chicago formatted papers.


This LibGuide is based on the MLA Citations LibGuide created by Montgomery College Libraries. The content and format are used with permission.

How to Create a Works Cited Entry using NoodleTools

Click Play then please click on the full screen icon in the bottom right of the screen.

General Information

These rules are the same for print and ebooks.

For more than 3 authors: Provide only the first author, followed by et al. For example: Wingert, Peter, et al.

Abbreviating Months: When you include the month in the publication date or date of access, abbreviate to the first three letters (e.g., Dec.). May, June, & July do not need abbreviations.

Capitalize the main words in the document title. If there is a colon in the title (a subtitle), capitalize the main words after the colon.

Alphabetize your Works Cited list by the first word of the citation, usually the author's last name. If there is no author, alphabetize by the first main word in the title (ignore A, An, or The).

Creating a Works Cited Entry for Book or eBook

In-text Citations: 1-3 Known Authors

Author named in the text : Format

Signal phrase with author's name, "quote" (page).


One researcher, Carol Gilligan, concludes that "women impose a distinctive construction on moral problems" (105).

Author named in parenthetical citation: Format

Signal phrase, "quote" (Author page).


According to a study, "the poor and minorities were victims" (Frieden and Sagalyn 29).

Our text discusses the "ethical dilemmas in public relations" (Wilcox, Ault, and Agee 125).

In-text Citation - More than 3 Known Authors

More Than Three Authors
You may list all names or use only the first author's name followed by et al.


Signal phrase, "quote" (Author et al. page).


Recent research shows that "…" (Graham et al. 86).

In-text Citation - No Author

If the source has no named author, use the first main word in the title. If it is a very short title, you may use the whole thing. Put the title in quotation marks if it's a short source (e.g., an article) or italicize it if it's a longer source, like a book.

You may also name the title in your text and provide the page number in parentheses.

Note: Books and websites are italicized. Webpages and article names are within quotation marks.


Signal phrase, "quote" (Shortened Title page).

Signal phrase with title, "quote" (page).


Full title of book = Challenging Capital Punishment: Legal and Social Science Approaches

One article states that, "A death row inmate may demand his execution for notoriety" (Challenging Capital Punishment 135).

Challenging Capital Punishment states that, "A death row inmate may demand his execution for notoriety" (135).

Title of the article = "10 Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer's"

One sign of Alzheimers is "memory loss that disrupts daily life" ("10 Early Signs").


MLA Checklist - Quick Guide for Printing

For more information on MLA from OWL at Purdue

OWL at Putdue so one of the best sources of information on citing. Please review the following material if more information is required.

Citation Tools