how to cite a student essay in mla

how to cite a student essay in mla

Citing a student essay in MLA format follows the same general principles as citing any other source, with slight variations depending on where you found the essay (e.g., in print, online, or as part of a class assignment). Here’s how to properly cite a student essay in MLA style:

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In-Text Citation:

In the body of your essay, provide an in-text citation whenever you quote, paraphrase, or reference the student essay. Include the author’s name (the student’s name) and the page number (if available) in parentheses. For example:

  • (Smith 45) if the student’s last name is Smith and the page number is 45.

If the student essay does not have page numbers, you can use other methods for citation, such as paragraph numbers (if available) or a description of the source.

Works Cited Entry:

If you have access to the student essay in print or online, include it in your Works Cited page. The format for citing a student essay in an anthology or from an online source is as follows:

Print Source:

Student’s Last Name, Student’s First Name. “Title of the Essay.” Title of the Anthology, edited by Editor’s Name (if applicable), Publisher, Year, Page Range.

For example:

Smith, John. “The Impact of Technology on Society.” Essays on Technology and Society, edited by Mary Johnson, ABC Publishing, 2020, pp. 45-60.

Online Source:

Student’s Last Name, Student’s First Name. “Title of the Essay.” Title of the Website or Online Platform, Date of Publication (if available), URL.

For example:

Smith, Jane. “The Role of Social Media in Modern Communication.” Student Essays on Contemporary Issues, 15 June 2021,

If the student essay was part of a class assignment and isn’t published online or in an anthology, you can provide the student’s name, the title of the essay in quotation marks, the name of the course or class assignment, the institution’s name, and the date.

In-Text Citation for Unpublished Student Essay:

For an unpublished student essay, you can include the author’s name and the title of the essay in quotation marks in your in-text citation. For example:

  • (“Smith, John” “The Impact of Technology”)

Remember to italicize titles of longer works (like books or anthologies) and use quotation marks for shorter works (like essays). Additionally, format your Works Cited entry according to MLA guidelines.

Always follow the specific guidelines provided by your instructor or institution for citing student essays, as there may be variations in citation style.

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