MLA Resources

This list is for ENG 1001, ENG 1002, and ENG 0900 students. It’s a compilation of many of the MLA citation and documentation resources posts to my website. You can also search my website for things like “works cited page,” the name of your essay assignment (“poetry essay” for example), citation sandwich formatting, or something of the like to see what posts show.

Citation and Documentation Resources

ENG 1001: English Composition I Resources

Citation Sandwich Expectations (how to incorporate citation into your essay body paragraphs)

Direct Quote Citation Example

Example Paraphrase Citation

Works Cited Page

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Works Cited Page for ENG 1001

This includes information for the source-based essay assignments in my ENG 1001 course. First off, here’s the main page about “Creating Works Cited Entries” link from IVCC’s Stylebook, and here’s a sample Works Cited page. Note the hanging tab (that extra indented white space before the extra lines of each entry) and how all the entries are alphabetized. Here’s how to format a hanging tab.

Works Cited Page Examples

The below examples DO NOT include hanging tab formatting (that’s a nightmare for a blog) and are categorized as library database, Issues and Controversies database, and reputable Internet source

Be sure to check each essay assignment expectations for the minimum and maximum number of sources required.

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Citation Sandwich Expectations

This can be used as an example for my ENG 1001 and ENG 1002 essays. And while I’ll be specifically grading for citation sandwiches, sandwiching your evidence within your body paragraphs in the way I’ve outlined below will bring a couple key things to your academic writing:

  1. Academic Authority: providing appropriate signal phrases and explanation will show readers that you’re using credible and relevant sources that fit within the context of your argument.
  2. Organization: preparing readers for what is coming with a topic sentence, signal phrase, and helping them see the connections that you’ve just made with your citation examples and wrap-up sentences will help them understand the content that you’re providing them. It’s like a little mini 5-paragraph essay within your body paragraphs.
  3. Grading: while my grading expectations include citation sandwich structure specifically, I’ve simply named a common grading expectation the “citation sandwich” to make things more clear for students. Additionally, most IVCC English instructors use the department grading guidelines that look for strong organization, thesis and support within student writing, something use of citation sandwiches will generally provide your essay.

Citation Sandwich Expectations

Every body paragraph needs to contain the following elements. These will add academic authority to your writing, showcase the relevance/credibility of the sources you’ve chosen as evidence of your claims, and help readers see the context of your evidence within your paragraph and essay claims.

  • Body Paragraph Topic Sentence
  • 2-3 sentences that state your claim
  • Evidence: signal phrase with citation
  • 2-3 sentences that explain (1) how the quote supports your claim or (2) context for the quote
  • Repeat “claim, evidence, explain” steps, as needed (at least once is suggested)
  • 1-3 sentences that wrap up the paragraph’s point and may transition to the next paragraph.

Here’s an Example Direct Quote

Topic sentence of body paragraph. 2-3 sentences that set-up or build the paragraph’s point. The article “Generation X Defined” from Slate Magazine makes the claim “The great drawback to becoming a celebrated voice of a generation is that it encourages writers to believe that whatever idle thoughts drift through their minds … are automatically of interest (Pond et al. 455). While those in previous generations were taught that children should be seen, not heard, the up-and-coming Generation X has generally been encouraged for individual opinions. Repeat steps 2-4 as needed. 1-3 wrap-up and transitional sentence (remember that your transitions can be at the end of this paragraph, the beginning of the next paragraph, or combination of the two via connecting language/words.

Things to note about this example:

  1. The parenthetical documentation formatting of this source tells readers this article includes an author name (and the page number of the citation, when known–often this is not known on Internet source). On the Works Cited page, this entry would begin with the last name of Pond.
  2. The use of the introductory signal phrase as well as the continued reference back to the source while including additional information helps show readers the credibility of your source while reminding them that you’re using borrowed information.
  3. The explanation or context provided by you the student is nearly as long as the paraphrase citation, making your voice be just as strong (or stronger) than the voice of the citation. 

Additional Resources:

And here’s a link to transitional language post if you’re looking for ways to provide more transition within and between your paragraphs.

In-text Citation Example

This can be used as a general in-text citation example for a direct quote. But don’t forget that every citation needs to be properly incorporated into your body paragraph/essay text, whether direct, paraphrase/summary, primary, or secondary.

Below is a default in-text citation sample, one mentioning the author name and one mentioning the character in question (useful for literary criticism/analysis). Both use a story we study in ENG 1002, ENG 1003, and ENG 2013 but with a fake page number:

The girl states, “will you please please please please please stop talking” (Hemingway 525).

Hemingway writes, “will you please please please please stop talking” (525).

And this is what you do if you’re using a database source that does not have page numbers.

The author writes, “that was the best scholarly evidence about Amelia Earhart’s disappearance I had ever read” (Smith).

Smith writes, “that was the best scholarly evidence about Amelia Earhart’s disappearance I had ever read.”

Works Cited Page for Research

This includes information for the Research Essay assignment in my ENG 1002 class, but can also serve as an example for my LIT 2013 class. First off, here’s the main page about “Creating Works Cited Entries” link from IVCC’s Stylebook, and here’s a sample Works Cited page. Note the hanging tab (that extra indented white space before the extra lines of each entry) and how all the entries are alphabetized. Here’s how to format a hanging tab.

Research Works Cited Page

Students are required to include 3-5 library database articles/sources, 2-4 reputable Internet sources, a there’s a list in the Blackboard resources folder but common ones include Slate Magazine, The Atlantic, The Guardian),  and up to 5 additional sources as needed.

The below examples DO NOT include hanging tab formatting (that’s a nightmare for a blog) and are categorized as library database, reputable Internet, and additional common types

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Direct Quote & Citation Sandwich Example

Information in this post can used as example for the ENG 1001 or ENG 1002 source-based essays. It first provides an example direct quote citation with resources, and then provides a reminder to use “citation sandwich” formatting to incorporate all your citations. For information about paraphrase/summary citation, see this post.

Direct Quote Example

A direct quote is language taken word-for-word from a source, enclosed in quotation marks. It should be incorporated into your body paragraph only after you provide a topic sentence and begin your paragraph’s claim.

Topic sentence of body paragraph. 1-3 sentences that set-up or build the paragraph’s claim. An article “Generation X and Mixed Messages” by Amy Pond, John Smith, and Rory Williams found in Slate Magazine describes how “the great drawback to becoming a celebrated voice of a generation is that it encourages writers to believe that whatever idle thoughts drift through their minds … are automatically of interest (12). While those in previous generations were taught that children should be seen, not heard, the up and coming Generation X has generally been encouraged for individual opinions; however positive this message is, many fear it is creating a generation that will be quickly disillusioned by professional expectation when individuals enter the workforce.

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Commonly Used Library Databases

Depending on the ENG 1002 learning module you’re working in, you’ll need to use one or more library database articles for your formal essay assignment. Here are the most commonly used library database resources (while the links may not work, the names are the same and can be found by scrolling through this master page):

Useful for General Research Topics

Useful for Controversial Topics and Topic Inspiration

Literary Topics and Literary Criticism

Remember that you’ll need to log into the library site if you’re not using a campus computer. When you reach the log in screen, you’ll enter 24611 + your purple student number + 01, and then enter your last name.