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Assignment | Rogerian Argument (Reeves): Example Citations

ENGL 1302 | Prof. Brian Reeves (Spring 2024)

Journal Articles

Lastname, Firstname M. "Title of Article: Use Title or Headline Capitalization, Not ALL CAPS or all lower case." Name of the Publication, vol. #, no. #, DD. Mon. YYYY, pp. #-#. Name of Website or Database, https://url or doi.

Ching, Boby Ho-Hong. “The Effect of Masculinity Threat on Transprejudice: Influence of Different Aspects of Masculinity Contingent Self-Worth.” Psychology & Sexuality, vol. 13, no. 3, Sept. 2022, pp. 550–64. EBSCOhost,

Parenthetical citation examples: (Ching). (Ching 560).

2 Authors

With 2 authors, only flip the name of the first author into Last, First order.

Fetner, Hannah, and Shelie A. Miller. “Environmental Payback Periods of Reusable Alternatives to Single-Use Plastic Kitchenware Products.” International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, vol. 26, no. 8, Aug. 2021, pp. 1521–37. EBSCOhost,

Parenthetical citation examples: (Fetner and Miller). (Fetner and Miller 1527).

3 or More Authors

When there are 3 or more authors, just name the first author followed by "et al."

Pickel, Gert, et al. "Covid-19-Related Conspiracy Myths, Beliefs, and Democracy-Endangering Consequences." Politics and Governance, vol. 10, no. 4S1, Dec. 2022, pp. 177-191. Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints,

Parenthetical citation examples: (Pickel et al.). (Pickel et al. 177).


You can find journal articles online, either as open access (deliberately free) or shared. There often won't be a premade citation tool to use, and the unwary may think they're looking at regular web article.

Example 1

Screenshot of Sage Journals page indicating the name of the journal, which isn't quite as visible as the publisher. The volume and issue are highlighted as clues.


Gaub, Janne E. "Assessing the Utility of Body-Worn Cameras for Collegiate Police Agencies." Police Quarterly, vol. 25, no. 1, 16 Aug. 2021, pp. 118-148.

Not Correct:

Gaub, Janne E. "Assessing the Utility of Body-Worn Cameras for Collegiate Police Agencies." Sage Journals, 16 Aug. 2021,


Article link.

  • Correctly identifying the source type: If you didn't know what to look for, you might try citing this as a regular online article, rather than a more credible journal article. Look for volume, issue, and journal names as clues. The articles themselves may have abstracts (summaries), specific section headers, and lots of citations, unlike normal articles.
    • But see Example 3 for an exception.
  • Misleading citation provided: This citation was originally provided in APA format! It wasn't labeled as such -- I had to use previous knowledge (or comparison to other citations) to notice the differences and revise.

Example 2

Powell, Lisa M., et al. "Adolescent Exposure to Food Advertising on Television." American Journal of Preventive Medicine, vol. 33, no. 4S, 2007, pp. S251-S256. CiteSeerX,


Article link to same location I viewed it.

  • Author mix-up: The title page mentions co-author Szczypka but the actual first page of the article names Powell first, so she is the one who starts the citation.
  • Which website? This one's been shared around a few times: the title page mentions PubMed as the source, but it has ResearchGate named on top of the title page, but when we look at the url, it's hosted on PSU's CiteSeerX. Since this is where I'm viewing the file, this is the site I'm naming in the citation.


Example 3

An online journal article showing the abstract (summary): full text is not available. The summary is not a substitute for viewing the full article.


Not Ethical (Potentially):

Cao, Yingnan, et al. "Effect and Environmental Behavior of Microplastics in Soil." Waste Management & Research, 9 Aug. 2023,


Article link.

  • Full article isn't available: You should not cite a source you haven't actually looked at, and in this case, we can only see the summary. The next step needs to be using the library to get a copy (either we have it or you can do an interlibrary loan request) or to keep researching.
  • Wait, why does this one look like a web article? There's no volume/issue information because this particular article has been published "online first": it hasn't been released yet as part of the journal's sequence of releases.


Donohue, Laura K. The Cost of Counterterrorism: Power, Politics, and Liberty, Cambridge University Press, 2008. ProQuest Ebook Central,

Parenthetical citation example: (Donohue). (Donohue 32).

Bolton, Kenneth, and Joe Feagin. Black in Blue: African-American Police Officers and Racism, Taylor & Francis Group, 2004. ProQuest Ebook Central,

Parenthetical citation examples: (Bolton and Feagin). (Bolton and Feagin 191).

When there are 3 or more authors, just name the first author followed by "et al." (See the example for journal articles above if needed. Most books will have just 1-2 authors contributing equally; otherwise you tend to see different authors for different individual chapters.)

Vaping: Effects and Solutions, American Academy of Pediatrics, 2020. ProQuest Ebook Central,

Parenthetical citation example: (Vaping). (Vaping 130).


When an organization is both the author and publisher of a work, MLA prefers to just use their name as the publisher only.

When there's no author in the citation, your in-text citation uses the title -- just enough to be unique. If I had another source without an author that started out as Vaping, I'd need to include more of the title to distinguish them from each other.

Some books have an overall editor who has solicited others to write chapters for a shared theme.

Caution! This is the kind of situation premade citations aren't great at. You're more likely to just have a citation for the overall book, which isn't quite what we want.

Your citation will start with the chapter author, then the title of the chapter. After you do the book info (title, editor, publisher, date), you'll include the range of pages that that chapter spans.

Skulley, Carrie. "'You Should Smile More!' Gender and Press Coverage of Candidates During the 2016 Presidential Primary." Unconventional, Partisan, and Polarizing Rhetoric: How the 2016 Election Shaped the Way Candidates Strategize, Engage, and Communicate, edited by Jeanine E. Kraybill, Lexington Books/Fortress Academic, 2017, pp. 59-80. ProQuest Ebook Central,

Parenthetical citation example: (Skulley). (Skulley 61).

News and Regular Online Articles

Looking for a publisher? Scroll to the bottom of the page to look at the site footer.

If the publisher is the same (or almost) as the site name, skip it!

Caron, Christina. "Feeling Dismissed? How to Spot ‘Medical Gaslighting’ and What to Do About It." The New York Times, 29 July 2022,

Parenthetical citation example: (Caron).

Ho, Catherine. "Smoking Weed Daily Linked to Significantly Higher Risk of Heart Attack, Stroke." San Francisco Chronicle, Hearst Communications, 28 Feb. 2024,

Parenthetical citation example: (Ho).

No Author or Publishing Organization as Author

"Inclusive Design Benefits Everyone, Not Just People with Disabilities." CBC Radio, CBC/Radio-Canada, 27 July 2018,

Parenthetical citation example: ("Inclusive").

Allen, Matthew. "Designing for Disability Justice: On the Need to Take a Variety of Human Bodies into Account." Graduate School of Design, Harvard University, 10 Feb. 2021,

Parenthetical citation: (Allen).

"Benefits of Accessible Design.", General Services Administration,

Parenthetical citation: ("Benefits").

Rush, Sharon, ed. "The Business Case for Digital Accessibility." W3C Web Accessibility Initiative, World Wide Web Consortium, 9 Nov. 2018,

Parenthetical citation: (Rush).

You will not cite entire websites.

Create a citation for each page of the website you've pulled information from, instead.


When you're in the library databases, look for the icon (or just a button that says Cite) to get premade citations!

Trying to use EasyBib etc on paywalled sources (like our databases) can go very wrong and lead to citations like:

"Database Authentication." Lone Star College. Accessed 23 Feb. 2024.

Citation tool from the main library search showing many formats in alphabetical order. You need to scroll down to choose MLA from the list.

Make sure the citation you're grabbing is actually MLA format, too. There are MANY styles out there.

MLA Resources

MLA Online Guide

Quick Links:

Additional Resources: