Periodical MLA citation is all about magazines, journals and newspapers. Pay attention to this – if you include month of publication, make sure to abbreviate it (Jan., Feb., or Mar.)

The general format of citations will look like this:

Author. Title. Title of Container (Journal), Volume and/or Number, Publisher, Date, Location (Page Numbers).

In our citation examples we use the following color coding:

  • Red – Author
  • Blue – Title of book/article/charter/webpage
  • Pink – Date
  • Green – Title of journal
  • Sienna – Pages
  • Peach – Additional information about the source (i.e. its type, specific features etc.)


Park, Alice. “The Story about a Viral Photo of Opioid Overdose.” Time, 24 Jan. 2017, pp. 45-46.

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Scholarly Journal (Paginated by Issue)

Zhang, Qun. “Lean Six Sigma: A Literature Review.” Interdisciplinary Journal of Contemporary Research in Business, vol. 3, no. 10, 2012, pp. 599-605.

If there is no author at all, format your source this way:

“Understanding Benefits and Limitations of Six Sigma.” International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, vol. 2, no. 1, 2012, pp. 1-9.

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Daily Newspaper

Mathews, David. “From Draft Town to Gray Skies.” The Chicago Defender [Chicago, IL], 28 Apr. 2015, pp. 2-6.

Do you need to cite some well-known newspaper such as The Guardian or The New York Times?

Good for you – no brackets should be used in that case.

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Editorial in Newspaper

Editorial is cited as any article in a periodical, but it is necessary to state that it is ‘Editorial’ after the title of the work.

“Who’s Afraid of Betsy DeVos.” Editorial. The Wall Street Journal, 17 Jan. 2017, p. 10.

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Letter to the Editor

“Rebellion against the Weird.” Letter. The Guardian, 27 Jan. 2017, p. 12.

Don’t forget to include the word “Letter”. It’s really important to specify what you are citing.

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Book or Film Review

When it comes to book review, you should remember to include: 1) the reviewer and his work and 2) the original work that is reviewed.

Scott, Alexander. “M. Night Shyamalan’s ‘Split’ Has Personality. O.K., Personalities. Lots.” Review of Split, directed by Night Shyamalan, New York Times, 19 Jan. 2017, p. 25.

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Further study