What is MLA?
- MLA stands for Modern Language Association
- A style of documenting the sources you paraphrase, quote, and use in your research paper or project.
- Used in writing courses and the humanties, especially language and literature.
- Determines the exact format of your citations by specifying publication information to include and the order of this information as well as capitalization and punctuation.
- Sources used appear at the end of the paper in an alphabetical list called the Works Cited page.
Learn more at Modern Language Association
Why Should I Cite?
According the Arizona State University LibGuide on Citation and Plagiarism, there are four main reasons to cite:
- To acknowledge the author(s) of the work you are using in your paper.
- To demonstrate that the sources for your paper are of good quality and that the paper is well-researched.
- To allow readers to follow up on ideas mentioned briefly in your paper by finding the sources of the ideas and reading further.
- To give readers a context for your work and to provide links to others who have researched about the topic so readers can explore what else has been said about it.
The main reason not to plagiarize is because doing so is unfairly attributing ideas of someone else to yourself, whether or not you intend to.
If you’re unsure whether or not to cite something, ask your professor or a librarian for help. Remember, it’s better to overcite than undercite!
Learn more about plagiarism and avoiding plagiarism at the CSU Writing Center website.
Where can I get help?
- Talk to your professor.
- Schedule an appointment at the Writing Center.