Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

SOC106 - Introduction to Sociology - Marin

What is an In-Text Citation?

Whenever you use information from an outside source in a paper, you need to tell the reader where the information came from. While the citations on your Works Cited page provide detailed information about each source, the in-text citations act as a guide for your reader. These sign-posts alert the reader that you are using outside information and direct them to the works cited page where they can find the full citation. 

MLA uses the author's last name and page number system for in-text citations. When a source does not have an author, use the first element of the citation which is most often the title. The author's last name can be included in parentheses at the end of the quote, summary, or paraphrase or can be included in the narrative as a signal phrase. 


One Author


Two Authors

Full Citation

Axelrod, J. B. C., and Rise B. Axelrod. “Reading Frederick Douglass through Foucault's Panoptic Lens: A Proposal for Teaching Close Reading.” Pacific Coast Philology  Vol. 39, 2004, pp. 112–127. JSTOR,

In-Text Citation

Student's confidence and skill at close reading can be increased through the use of guided questions that build on each other (Axelrod & Axelrod 116).

Axelrod and Axelrod argue that by using guided questions that build on each other, student's confidence and skill at close reading can increase (116).

Three or More Authors

No Author

No Page Number