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ENG 112: College Composition II (Abbe-LO): Citing Sources

This guide has been created by librarians at NOVA to help you find books, articles, videos, and other types of resources related to this program of study. Direct comments to cgreges@nvcc.edu

Citation Style: MLA

Click the image above or consult the website below for more information on MLA citation style.

Why and When to Cite

Why to Cite:

  • Give credit to the authors of the sources you used.
  • Provide evidence you did research -- good, credible sources give your work more authority.
  • Allows your reader to locate the sources you used.
  • Avoid plagiarism.

When to Cite:

You should cite a source if you reproducequoteparaphrase, or summarize ideas and/or media created by other individuals. When in doubt, cite!

In-Text Citations

Below are 3 ways that you can provide an in-text citation:

1. Use a signal phrase and a direct quotation. A signal phrase may introduce the author (first and last name for first mention) in a lead-in sentence with a direct quotation, and then place the page number in parenthesis at the end.

Ex.: Michael Pollan explains that "the apple, like the settlers themselves, had to forsake its former domestic life and return to the wild before it could be reborn as an American" (13).

2. Use a signal phrase and a direct quotation and then place the author's last name and the page number in parenthesis at the end (no comma goes between them).

Ex.: On writer explains that "the apple like the settlers themselves, had to forsake its former domestic life and return to the wild before it could be reborn as an American" (Pollan 13).

3. Use a signal phrase and a paraphrase to do the same as the two examples above, but without quotation marks, since you will restate the author's ideas in your own words. The us of paraphrase is considered an indirect quotation.

Ex.: Michael Pollan compares the apple to the settler, because both required an experience in the wild in order to fully express the American experience (13).

Ex.: One writer compares the apple to the settler, because both required an experience in the wild in order to fully express the American experience (Pollan 13).

All of these in-text citations would correspond to a citation on your works cited page for:

Pollan, Michael. The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World . New York: Random House, 2001. Print.

Formatting Your Works Cited Page

MLA Works Cited Formatting