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MLA Citation Guide (MLA 8th Edition): Encyclopedias & Dictionaries

Take Note

While MLA 8th edition recommends including URLs, make sure the URL you use is a permalink or use a DOI. Because library databases require a login, the URL in the address bar may stop working after the session ends. When citing a URL, do not include the "https://", if applicable. 

 Note: If you do not have information such as an editor's name, a volume or page numbers, leave those sections out of your citation.

Encyclopedia or Dictionary From Library Database - Known Author

Format

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Entry." Title of Encyclopedia or Dictionary, edited by Editor's First Name Last Name, Edition if given and not first edition, vol. Volume Number, Publisher Name, Date of Publication, pp. First Page - Last Page. Name of Database, permalink URL or DOI.

Example

Selby, Christine. "Assessment." Eating Disorders: An Encyclopedia of Causes, Treatment, and Prevention, edited by Justine J. Reel, ABC-CLIO, 2014, pp. 35-43. ProQuest Ebook Central, ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/knowledgecenter/detail.action?docID=113540

Encyclopedia or Dictionary From a Website

Format

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Entry." Title of Encyclopedia or Dictionary, Publication or Update Date, Name of Website. URL. Accessed Day Month Year of Access. 

Example

McLean, Steve. "The Tragically Hip." The Canadian Encyclopedia, 26 Mar. 2015, Historica Canada. www.thecanadianencyclopedia.com/en/article/the-tragically-hip-emc. Accessed 27 Jun. 2016.


Note: In this example the date of last edit is listed as publication or update date. List the full date if given in Day,  Month, Year format, abbreviating the month. Date of access is the day the website was visited.

Encyclopedia or Dictionary Entry In Print

Format

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Entry." Title of Encyclopedia or Dictionary, edited by Editor's First Name Last Name, Edition if given and not first edition, vol. Volume Number, Publisher Name, Year of Publication, pp. First Page - Last Page.

Example

Barber, Russell J. "Anthropological Ethics." Ethics, edited by John K. Roth, Rev. ed., vol. 1, Salem Press, 2005, pp. 67-69.

Encyclopedia or Dictionary From Library Database - Unknown Author

Format

"Title of Entry." Title of Encyclopedia or Dictionary, edited by Editor's First Name Last Name, Edition if given and not first edition, vol. Volume Number, Publisher Name, Date of Publication, pp. First Page - Last Page. Name of Database. 

Example

"Shakespeare, William." Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, World Book, 2016. Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, unr.idm.oclc.org/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=funk&AN=SH093700&site=ehost-live&scope=site.


  Note:This example had no editor's name, edition, volume or page numbers, so these elements were left out of the citation.

Wikipedia

Format

"Title of Entry." Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, Wikimedia Foundation, Day Month Year entry was last modified, Time entry was last modified, URL of entry. Accessed Day Month Year Wikipedia entry was last viewed.

Example

"Body Image." Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 16 June 2016, 7:41 pm, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_image. Accessed 28 June 2016.


 Note: The date and time the article was last modified appears at the bottom of each Wikipedia article.

 Note: Wikipedia may not be considered an acceptable source for a college or university assignment. Be sure to evaluate the content carefully and check your assignment