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Creating an Annotated Bibliography

The Basic Formula for MLA Style

Once you have located sources for your project, you will want to make sure that they are used responsibly. Here is a guide on using APA citation style.

Created by the Modern Language Association, MLA style is used for:

  • Art
  • English
  • Literature
  • Philosophy

The basic formula for MLA (Modern Language Association) citations can be found below:

Author, First. "Title of Article." Title of Periodical, vol., no., Year, pages. DOI or URL

Example:

  • Written by one author: Kurtz, Thomas G. "A Random Trotter Product Formula." Proceedings of the American Mathematical Society, vol. 35, 1972, pp. 147–154. doi:10.1090/S0002-9939-1972-0303347-5
  • Written by two authors: Weisman, Caroline M, and Sean R Eddy. “Gene Evolution: Getting Something from Nothing.” Current Biology, vol. 27, no. 13, 2017, p. 663. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2017.05.056.
  • Written by multiple authors: Zhang, Xiao, et. al. "Random Graph Models for Dynamic Networks. The European Physical Journal B : Condensed Matter and Complex Systems, vol. 90, no. 10, pp. 1–14. doi:10.1140/epjb/e2017-80122-8.
  • Written by no authors: "Random Thoughts: 'hose stuff'." Fire Engineering, vol. 152, no. 6, p. 140.

Traditional Print books:

Last Name, First Name. Title of Book. City of Publication, Publisher, Publication Date.

Examples: 

  • Anderson, Carol. White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide. Bloomsbury, 2016.
  • Kendi, I. X. How to Be an Antiracist. One World, 2019.
  • Oluo, I. So You Want to Talk about Race. Seal Press, 2018.

Electronic books:

Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of book [eBook edition]. Publisher. URL

*It is only necessary to denote format when the electronic version differs from the traditional print version.*

Audiobooks:

Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of book (N. Narrator, Narr.) [Audiobook]. Publisher.

*It is only necessary to denote format when the audiobook version differs from the traditional print version in some way (is abridged or has additional content).*

Traditional print news article:

Author, First. "Title of Article." Title of Newspaper, Day Month Year, pages.

  • Collins-Hughes, Laura. "Provincetown: Go for the Mask Compliance, Stay for the Show." New York Times, 1 August 2020, p. C1. 

Online news article (from a publisher with a physical newspaper):

Lastname, First. "Title of Article." Title of Newspaper, Day Month Year, URL

Online news article (from a publisher without a physical newspaper):

Lastname, First. "Title of Article." Name of publishing website, Month Day Year, URL

Lastname, First. "Title of Page." Site Name, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Group name. "Title of page." Site name, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

"Title of page." Site name, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Blogpost:

Lastname, First. "Title of Blogpost." Name of Blog, Day Month Year of blogpost, URL of blogpost. Accessed Day Month Year.

Facebook:

Lastname, First or Name of Group. "Description of Post." Facebook, Day Month Year of Post, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Instagram:

Lastname, First or Name of Group [@username]. "Content of the post up to the first 20 words" [Instagram Post], Instagram, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Twitter:

Lastname, First or Name of Group [@username]. "Content of the post up to the first 20 words" [Tweet], Twitter, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

YouTube (or other streaming video):

Last name, First name of the creator. “Title of the video or audio.” Youtube, role of contributors and their First name Last name, URL. Accessed Day Month Year.

Format for MLA Annotated Bibliographies

Once you have completed the citation, you'll want to add your annotation. Your citation should follow the hanging indent style that is found in all Reference lists, while your annotation should be in paragraph style and indented one inch to the left. Below find an example:

To complete the formatting above in Microsoft Word:

  • Select the text of your citations and right-click. Select "paragraph" and under the "Indentation" section, set "Special" to "Hanging."
  • Select the text of your annotations and hit the "tab" button on your computer.

If you have any questions about this formatting or any other aspect of creating an annotated bibliography, reach out to us at research@bridgewater.edu.