A person writing a paper. A completed stamp and MLA citation appear in quotes. Image created by author using SpeedPaint

After several hours of brainstorming and browsing the internet for sources, you've gathered all the information you need for your assignment and completed the writing task.

Hold on!🫸🏼

Your professor has asked you to use MLA style to reference your sources, and you're feeling a bit lost about how to cite a website in MLA style.

Have you ever felt confused or faced difficulties while citing a source in MLA style?

Don't panic! It's easier than you think. Get those references to stand out!

MLA citation components

When citing a website in MLA style, follow this structure of "core elements" in this order, with the following punctuation: 👇

  • Author. (if available)

  • "Title." (title of webpage in quotations)

  • Container, (website name in italics)

  • Publisher, (if different from the website name)

  • Publication date, (date with month abbreviated, year)

  • URL. (the web page's address)


    Author. "Title of the Webpage." Name of the Website, Publisher, Publication date, URL.

Image of a webpage showing MLA core elements. Remember⚠️

  • Each element ends with a comma or a period.

  • If something doesn't apply, skip it!

Citation example

Check out the MLA citation for this Rumie Byte below:

Wilson, Neeba. “Need to learn protein synthesis? These simple diagrams & analogies will help!” Rumie-learn, 14 June 2024, learn.rumie.org/jR/bytes/need-to-learn-protein-synthesis-these-simple-diagrams-analogies-will-help.


While reading this Byte from the Rumie website, what does "Rumie" represent in MLA style?

Author citations

Here is the breakdown of the author part when you cite a website in MLA style:

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Single author

  • Last name, First name.

    E.g. Smith, David.

No author

  • If there isn’t an author listed, skip it!

    Start the citation with the title.

Two authors

  • Last name, First name, and First name Last name.

    E.g. Smith, David, and Jane John.

Three or more authors

  • Cite only the first author's name, et al. Last name, First name, et al.

    E.g. Smith, David, et al.

Citing webpages in-text

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In MLA style, citing webpages in-text follows the format shown below:

  • (Author's last name)

  • ("Title of webpage") if no author is listed

If you're referencing a point made by the author (in this case, Neeba Wilson on the Rumie website), your in-text citation would look like this:

According to Wilson, MLA style is straightforward once you understand the core elements (Wilson).

If the webpage doesn't have an author, it would look like this:

MLA style is straightforward once you understand the core elements ("How to Use MLA Style").

Best practices

Here's how to quickly and accurately cite a website in MLA style:

Image of a figure pointing to the message MLA Citation the best way

  • MLA only requires the www. Address. So, simplify URLs! Drop the https://.

  • If the publisher's name matches the author or the title, skip it!

  • Online info can change or disappear. Download or print key documents to have a backup. You could also use the bookmark function.

  • Note when you first accessed the page. It’s not required, but it’s a good habit.

Take Action

Now go forth and cite with style!

Follow these steps to learn more about MLA style:


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