Skip to main content

ENC 1102 - Prof. Malenfant: Citing In Text


Formatting Your MLA Paper Using Microsoft Word 2013

MLA In-Text Citations


Whenever you use another's words, facts, or ideas for your paper you must provide a parenthetical reference.This will usually be the author's last name and page number. Below is an example:

In order for a machine to think, it must execute the tasks in a fashion similar to a human's thought process (Nilsson 47).

This form of shortened in-texting citing is called parenthetical. The full citation will appear in the works cited page at the end of your paper. For this specific source; a book, it will look like this.

Nilsson, Nils J. The Quest for Artificial Intelligence: A History of Ideas and Achievements. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010. Print.

Direct and Indirect Quotes

When citing verbatim, or word for word, then you must use quotation marks. See the following example:

If machines are to think, they must "at the very least be able to do thinking-related things humans can do" (Nilsson 47).

When taking material from a secondary source, try to locate the original source if possible. If this isn't an option, name the original source or quote in a signal phrase, followed by qtd. in ("quoted in") to indicate the source you actually consulted. For example:

               Belmont argues that high schools are pressured to act as "social service centers, and this
               poses a challenge for teachers" (qtd. in Wadsworth 276).

Tips on Paraphrasing

When you paraphrase or quote a source:

Cite only the last name of the author.

Cite the page number(s) of the paraphrased information.

Exceptions: do not include the page number if:

• the source is only a page long
• the source is a website
• the source is an article from an online database
• you wish to cite the entire source

Within a paragraph, the second (or third, etc.) time you site a source, list only the page number. No page number? Then you can write "(ibid.)" Use the present tense to explain what an author wrote. If your quote contains a quote, use single quotation marks (' ') around the original quote.

Tips on Block Quoting

When your quote is longer than four lines:

• Start the quote on a new line.

• Indent the entire quote by ten spaces (two tabs).

• Don't use quotation marks.

• Double-space the entire quote (just like the rest of the paper).

• If your quote contains a quote, use double quotation marks (" ") around the original quote.