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MLA 8 for Faculty: Home

Get a quick introduction to the new MLA 8 citation style

What are the changes in MLA 8?

What hasn't changed:

  • The format of a paper 
  • In-text citations  

What the big changes are:

  • There is no longer a template for each type of citation. Instead, there is a general template that is used for ALL citations, regardless of the publication format of the source.
  • This new template is composed of "core elements," most of which (author, title, etc.) are familiar to you. See the box on the right.
  • The new "core element" is the container

Other changes:

  • Include URLs for Web sources and, optionally, for other sources accessed online (databases).
  • Omit the format of a source (Print, Web, DVD, etc.) at the end of a citation.
  • More changes are listed at the MLA Style Center.

The Core Elements

                                                            

What is a container?

The containers concept is most of what's new about MLA 8. A container is a larger whole that "contains" one's source. For example, for an article in a journal, the article is the source and the journal is the container. 

Many sources have more than one container. For these sources, add the information about the second container after the information about the first container. 

Examples of sources with two containers:

  • For an article that was published in a journal that was accessed from a database or Web site: The article is the source, the journal is the first container, and the database or Web site is the second container.
  • For an essay in a book that was accessed from a database or Web site: The essay is the source, the book (eBook) is the first container, and the database or Web site is the second container.

For specific examples using the containers template, see the MLA Style Center.