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MLA 8th Edition: In-text Citations

In-text Citations

The general format of an in-text citation is the Author Name and a page number.


One author:

(Author Last Name xx)


(Gerstel 393)


2 authors:

(Author Last Name and Author Last Name xx)


(Gaudet and Caron-Bourbonnais 171)


3 or more authors:

(Author Last Name et al. xx)


(Adler et al. 5)


Government publication or Corporate author:

(Corporate Author, Administrative Unit xx)


(Alberta Sustainable Resource Development 22)


An idea from 2 sources:

(Author xx; Author xx)


(Gerstel 22; Block and Betrus 45)

The general format for no author:

(Abbreviated Title of Source xx)



("5 Tips")



(Primary Colors, 124)

The general format for no page numbers:

(Author, division abbr. xx)  



(Laskas, ch. 8)


(Aslan, sec. 2)

Resource with no page numbers and no easily identifiable divisions (websites): 


Example: (Arnett)  Example 2: (McCulloch)

The general format for audiovisual media uses time (hours:minutes:seconds):

(Author xx:xx:xx-xx)

Example 5 seconds of interview:

(Kinew 00:07:16-21)

or 2 minutes and 12 seconds of television episode:

("Into the Deep" 00:32:02-34:14)

The general format for an indirect source:

(qtd. in Author xx)


Sarah Bailey replied that "MLA 8 was a great improvement" (qtd. in Townsend 1).

NorQuest Library has noted that the formal MLA style does not have a format for Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers so we have developed this citation style in the spirit of wahkôhtowin and reconciliation. 

Unlike most other personal communications, Elders and Knowledge Keepers should be cited in-text and in the reference list. The in-text citation format should be formatted as:

Delores Cardinal described the nature of the...


The nature of the place was... (Cardinal).

The citation format for the reference list can be found under the Audiovisual Media tab at the top of the page.


Note: If you would like to approach an Elder or Knowledge Keeper for teachings, remember to follow protocol or if you are unsure what their protocol is, please ask them ahead of time.

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Paraphrasing, Summary, and Analysis

To paraphrase you must put an idea into your own words and indicate your source using in-text citation.

To summarize you write a short description with less detail than if you were paraphrasing. You must also cite your source and use an in-text citation.

To analyze you examine and evaluate the elements that make up a written work and explain why it is effective or not.