The most commonly used style to write papers and cite sources is the MLA (Modern Language Association) style. Under this form of writing style, an MLA citation is used to credit sources from which information was collected. By doing so, writers can prevent accusations of plagiarism and bring credibility to their work
An MLA citation is the way that writers bring credit and attention to outside sources of information. The MLA citation comes in two different forms: the parenthetical citation and the works cited page.
The parenthetical citation is a method used to refer to the works of others within the text of your work. An MLA citation requires the author’s last name and the page from which a quotation or paraphrase was obtained. The full details of the reference must be included in the works cited page located at the end of the document. When a source has multiple authors or when the author is unknown, the format of the MLA citation will change. For this reason, it is very important to refer to the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (7th edition).
The works cited page is essentially a list of all of the references used within the work. Every parenthetical citation that is used within a work must also be included in the works cited page of that document. Each works cited entry contains greater detail then the parenthetical citation. These entries include: authors name, form of publication, date of publication, and date of access. With this information provided, the audience is able to access the source of information in order to validate the content or to learn more about the content.