Introduction to Academic Writing

Home » Research: MLA Formatting/Documentation

Research: MLA Formatting/Documentation


MLA Formatting Style

Please view this very short video on formatting your essay according to MLA guidelines:

MLA Formatting: three-minute video created by OWL at Purdue

MLA Documentation Style

The style recommended by the Modern Language Association for preparing scholarly manuscripts and student research papers concerns itself with the mechanics of writing, quotation, and documentation of sources. Along with APA style (which is used in the social sciences) and Chicago style (which is used in disciplines such as History), MLA style has been widely adopted by schools, academic departments, and instructors for nearly half a century. MLA is the style used in humanities—it is always used for papers written for English classes. A full and authoritative explanation of the MLA style can be found in The New MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, but the material outlined below contains an abbreviated version of how to use MLA style.

When you use sources, you must document these sources. According to MLA style guidelines, there are two things you must do to document your sources:

1) Following your reference to the source in your essay, either through paraphrase, summary, or direct quotation, you must supply a parenthetical reference.

2) This parenthetical reference refers in an abbreviated form to the longer citation which appears in your list of works cited at the end of your essay.

The following tutorial will give you a quick overview:

MLA Tutorial

Once you’ve reviewed the above documentation tutorial, please complete the three-part tutorial on plagiarism (a word derived from the Latin word for “kidnapper”) below:

KPU Plagiarism Tutorial (you will need to log in to Moodle to complete the tutorial).

Now, watch this short video on how to format your Works Cited page:

Short video on Works Cited page created by the OWL at Purdue.

Kwantlen’s Plagiarism Policy

Quick MLA Guide (created by KPU library)

Try this fun MLA Master Blaster game to test your knowledge before the quiz. The questions change each time you play, so play as many times as you like!

You should be familiar with all of the above material before you write your online documentation quiz!

RESEARCH HACK: Here are a couple of handy tools to help you create pain-free bibliographies:

Citation Machine


BibMe (Thanks to Stephanie for the tip on this one!)

EasyBib is the citation service I use when I write research papers. It’s free for MLA style, so you’re in luck! Unfortunately, I have to pay for APA–the citation style used in educational research.  😦


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: