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Citing Sources

Tips on citing sources from the DI Library

Works Cited

When you complete a paper or project, you will have a list of all the sources you used in your research. In MLA style, this list is called Works Cited.

Your Works Cited list goes at the end — on the back of your project board, at the end of your paper or job book, or on the last slide of your presentation.

  • Organize your Works Cited alphabetically by the author’s last name. If there is no author, alphabetize by the first main word of the title.
  • For each reference, the first line is not indented and all other lines are indented.
  • Double-space the References list.
  • Note that in MLA style, entries for online sources do not need to include the URL, although URLs may be added. Check with your instructor to find out what's expected for your assignment.

Here's an example:

Bell, Julian. Mirror of the World: A New History of Art. New York, NY: Thames &

            Hudson, 2007. Print

Blake, William. Pity. Metropolitan Museum of Art. 2015. Web. 16 Oct. 2015.

Eames: The Architect and the Painter. Dir. Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey. First Run

            Features, 2011. DVD.

Ruvoldt, Maria. "Michelangelo's Dream." Art Bulletin 85.1(2003): 86-113. ProQuest

           Central
. Web. 12 Oct. 2015.

In-Text Citations

Every time you use a quotation, a piece of information, or an image from another source, cite the source right where you use it, whether it’s on your project board or in your paper, job book, or presentation.

In MLA style, use in-text citations with the author and page number in parentheses.

  • If there are no page numbers, simply leave that element out.
  • If there is no author, use the first few words of the title so that your audience can identify the correct source in your Works Cited.

Quotations

Short quotations

For short passages of 4 lines or less, use quotation marks at the beginning and end of the quotation. In MLA style, put the in-text citation at the end of the quotation, and then add a period (after the closing parenthesis). Here's an example:

To help viewers understand that the central youth is dreaming, Michelangelo made some figures look more
finished than others. There is "a distinction between the 'reality' of the central pair and the insubstantial nature
of the images in the arc" (Ruvoldt 100).

 

Long quotations

For longer passages of more than 4 lines, use a block quote. In MLA style, a block quote is a separate paragraph, with all lines indented and double-spaced. Do not use quotation marks around a block quote. Put a period at the end of the quotation, and then add the in-text citation (after the period). Here's an example:

To help viewers understand that the central youth is dreaming, Michelangelo made some figures look more
finished than others:
            The contrasting states of finish in the drawing create a distinction between the 'reality' of the central
            pair and the insubstantial nature of the images in the arc. The misty quality of the cloud of figures
            asserts their status as 'dream visions,' apparitions in the mind of the central figure. Scale and finish
            further define levels of reality, distinguishing between the dreamer and the images he sees in his
            dream. (Ruvoldt 100)

Paraphrasing

When you want to use someone else’s idea but put it in your own words, paraphrase or summarize. To paraphrase or summarize an idea, you need to condense or clarify that idea. It’s not enough to take someone else’s sentence and replace some of the words; you need to truly understand the idea and state it in a new way.

In MLA style, put the in-text citation at the end of your paraphrase or summary, and then add a period (after the closing parenthesis). Here's an example:

To help viewers understand that the central youth is dreaming, Michelangelo made the central figures look more substantial while leaving the other figures looking like unfinished sketches (Ruvoldt 100).

Citing Images

In MLA style, an image requires a caption with an in-text citation and an entry in Works Cited.

An image caption provides information about the image and an in-text citation for the source where you found the image. Give each image a figure number (Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.).

If the image is a drawing, rendering, infographic, or other illustration, include:

  • the title of the image
  • what type of image it is (Drawing, Rendering, Infographic, Cartoon, Map, Diagram, Illustration, etc.)
  • the name of the artist or illustrator
  • the date the image was created

If the image is a photograph of a building, include:

  • the name of the building
  • the name of the architect
  • the date the building was completed
  • the location of the building
  • the name of the photographer
  • the date the photograph was taken

If the image is a photograph or reproduction of a work of art, include:

  • the title of the artwork
  • the name of the artist
  • the date the artwork was created
  • the name of the owner of the artwork (often a museum)

If you don’t see all of this information in the caption of the image or the text around it, look for a separate list of image credits. This list is often called List of IllustrationsIllustration CreditsImage Credits, or simply Credits. In books, it may be either at the beginning or at the end of the book.

At the end of the caption, insert an in-text citation citing the book, website or other source where you found the image. Here's an example:

Fig. 3. Pity, William Blake, ca. 1795, Metropolitan Museum of Art (Blake)

Citing Lectures

In MLA style, lectures are cited like any other source with an in-text citation and an entry in Works Cited. Here's an example:

Students were encouraged by their instructor to ask the librarians if they had any questions about citing images (Robinson).