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MLA Citation Guide (MLA 8th Edition): Newspaper Articles

This guide will help you learn how to cite correctly in MLA style.

How Can I Tell if it's a Newspaper?

Newspaper sections spread out on a table, Image from flickr, user NS Newsflash

Photo from Flickr, created by user NS Newsflash. Available under a Creative Commons license.

Not sure whether your article is from a newspaper? Look for these characteristics:

  • Main purpose is to provide readers with a brief account of current events locally, nationally or internationally.
  • Can be published daily, semiweekly or weekly.
  • Articles are usually written by journalists who may or may not have subject expertise.
  • Written for the general public, readers don't need any previous subject knowledge.
  • Little, if any, information about other sources is provided.

Articles may also come from journals or magazines.

Formatting

Note: For your Works Cited list, all citations should be double spaced and have a hanging indent.

A "hanging indent" means that each subsequent line after the first line of your citation should be indented by 0.5 inches.

Tips

Access Date

For all content found on the Web, you must list the date you first viewed the resource. This comes last in a citation. The exception to this rule is that you do not list access dates for content found in library databases.

Authors/Editors

An author can be a person but can also be an organization, or company. These are called group or corporate authors.

City of Newspaper

If the name of the city in which the newspaper is published is not evident from the title of the newspaper then provide the city in square brackets after the title of the newspaper.

E.g., When citing the Toronto Star, it is evident that the newspaper is published in Toronto. However, if citing The Gazette, it is not evident from the title that it is published in Montreal, so include [Montreal] after writing The Gazette.

Database Names

The name of the database will usually apear at the top of the search screen. Note that ProQuest and EBSCOhost are NOT database names, they are database providers. The name of the database will appear separately.

If you have used the function to search multiple databases at once and therefore do not know the individual database name, enter the name of the database provider (e.g. ProQuest) as the database.

Dates

The format of all dates is: Date Month (shortened) Year. E.g. 5 Sept. 2012.

If no date is listed, write n.d.

Page Numbers

If no page number is listed, write n. pag. in the Works Cited list.

If the entire article is only one page, do not include a page number in the in-text citation.

If the article appears on non-consecutive pages (e.g., the article starts on page 5 then continues on page 12), write the first page number and a plus (+) sign. E.g., 5+

Titles

Capitalize the first letter of every important word in the title. You do not need to capitalize words such as: in, of, or an.

If there is a colon (:) in the title, include what comes after the colon (also known as the subtitle).

Newspaper Article From a Library Database

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Name of Newspaper [city of newspaper if city name not in name], Date of Publication, p. Page number if given. Name of Database. 

Note: If the author's name is not listed, begin the citation with the title of the article.

Works Cited Example

Schmidt, Sarah. "Companies Fail the Test; Junk Food Marketing Aimed at Kids Faulted." The Gazette [Montreal], 10 Mar. 2010, p. A.11. Canadian Newsstand. 

 Note: If an article ends with a question mark or exclamation mark (!), you do not need to add a period to mark the end of the title.

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Schmidt A11)

 Note: If an article is only one page long, you do not need to provide the page number in the in-text citation.

 Note: If there is no author listed, the in-text citation would include the first word or words of the title of the article in quotation marks, e.g. ("Companies").

Newspaper Article From a Website

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of website, Name of Newspaper, Date of Publication, URL. Accessed access date.

 Note: If the author's name is not listed, begin the citation with the title of the article.

Works Cited List Example

Morrison, Malcolm. "TSX Recovers on Greece News." thestar.com, Toronto Star, 23 June 2011, https://www.thestar.com/business/economy/2011/06/23/tsx_recovers_on_greece_news.html. Accessed 7 June 2016.

 Note: This entry has no page numbers, so this information is left out of the citation.

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name)

(Morrison)

 Note: This entry has no page numbers, so this information is left out of the citation.

 Note: If there is no author listed, the in-text citation would include the first word or words of the title of the article in quotation marks, e.g. ("TSX Recovers").

Newspaper Article in Print

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Name of Newspaper, Date of Publication, p. Page number. 

 Note: If the author's name is not listed, begin the citation with the title of the article.

Works Cited List Example

Smith, Bill. "Talks on Bosnia Bog Down Over Borders." Toronto Star, 18 Aug. 2012, p. B6. 

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Smith B6)

 Note: If an article is only one page long, you do not need to provide the page number in the in-text citation. 

 Note: If there is no author listed, the in-text citation would include the first word or words of the title of the article in quotation marks, e.g. ("Talks").