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MLA Citation Guide (8th Edition): Magazine Articles

This guide shows you how to cite using MLA 8th edition

Abbreviating Months

In your works cited list, abbreviate months as follows: 

January = Jan.
February = Feb.
March = Mar.
April = Apr.
May = May
June = June
July = July
August = Aug.
September = Sept.
October = Oct.
November = Nov.
December = Dec.

Spell out months fully in the body of your paper. 

Tips: Articles from Websites

Author

It can sometimes be difficult to find out who the author of a website is. Remember that an author can be a corporation or group, not only a specific person. Author information can sometimes be found under an "About" section on a website.

If there is no known author, start the citation with the title of the website instead.

Date

The best date to use for a website is the date that the content was last updated. Otherwise look for a copyright or original publication date. Unfortunately this information may not be provided or may be hard to find. Often date information is put on the bottom of the pages of a website.

If you do not know the complete date, put as much information as you can find. For example you may have a year but no month or day.

Access Date

Date of access is now optional in MLA 8th edition. If no publication date is included, we recommend including the date you last accessed the site.

How Can I Tell if it's a Magazine?

Multiple magazines with covers facing out on display. Image from Flickr by Mannobhai

Photo courtesy of Flickr by Manoj Jacob. Available under a Creative Commons license.

Not sure whether your article is from a magazine? Look for these characteristics:

Popular magazines:

  • Main purpose is to entertain, sell products or promote a viewpoint.
  • Appeal to the general public.
  • Often have many photos and illustrations, as well as many advertisements.
  • Author may or may not have subject expertise.
  • Name and credentials of authors often NOT provided.
  • Articles tend to be short –less than 5 pages
  • Unlikely to have a bibliography or references list

Trade magazines:

  • Main purpose is to update and inform readers on current trends in a specific industry or trade.
  • Audience is members of a specific industry or trade or professors and students in that trade or industry
  • May have photos and numerous advertisements, but still assume that readers understand specific jargon of the profession.
  • Usually published by an association.
  • Authors are professionals working in the specific industry or trade.

Articles may also come from journals or newspapers.

Magazine Article From a Library Database - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. page numbers. Name of Database. 

Works Cited List Example

 Weinstein, Becca. "Trying Before Buying." Psychology Today, vol. 45, no. 3, May-June 2012, pp. 46-47. CINAHL Complete. 

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Weinstein 46)

  Note: While MLA 8th edition recommends including URLs, Columbia College Library recommends that URLs be left out when citing a work found in a library database. Because library databases require a login most URLs will stop working after the session ends. If your instructor requires a URL, look for the "Permalink" icon in the article description and place the URL generated after the name of the database. 

Magazine Article From a Library Database - Two Authors

Author's Last Name, First Name, and Second Author's First Name Last Name, and Third Author's First Name Last Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. Page numbers. Name of Database.

 Note: Only the first author listed appears in "Last Name, First Name" format. Authors' names are separated by a comma. Before the last author to be listed, add the word "and."

Works Cited List Example

Jefferson, David J., and Temma Ehrenfeld. "The Divorce Generation Grows Up." Newsweek, vol. 151, no. 16, 21 Apr. 2008, p. 46. MAS Ultra.

In-Text Citation Example

(First Author's Last Name and Second Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Jefferson and Ehrenfeld 46)

  Note: While MLA 8th edition recommends including URLs, Columbia College Library recommends that URLs be left out when citing a work found in a library database. Because library databases require a login most URLs will stop working after the session ends. If your instructor requires a URL, look for the "Permalink" icon in the article description and place the URL generated after the name of the database. 

Magazine Article From a Library Database - Unknown Author

"Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. Page numbers. Name of Database. 

 Note: If the author is unknown, begin the citation with the title of the article.

Works Cited List Example

"Convenience Store Shopping Behavior: Packaged Beverages." Convenience Store News, vol. 36, no. 15, 18 Dec. 2000, p. 113. Business Source Complete.

In-Text Citation Example

("First Word or Words of the Title" Page Number)

("Convenience Store Shopping" 113)

 Note: This magazine article doesn't list an author, so the first word or words of the title are included in the in-text citation in quotation marks. 

  Note: While MLA 8th edition recommends including URLs, Columbia College Library recommends that URLs be left out when citing a work found in a library database. Because library databases require a login most URLs will stop working after the session ends. If your instructor requires a URL, look for the "Permalink" icon in the article description and place the URL generated after the name of the database. 

Magazine Article From a Website

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any."Title of Magazine, Date of publication, URL. Accessed access date.

Works Cited List Example

Cosh, Kolby. "Tiny Human Brains Threaten Giant Dinosaur Bones in Alberta." Maclean's, 25 July 2012, www.macleans.ca/news/canada/a-blight-at-the-museum. Accessed 13 June 2016.

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name)

(Cosh)

Magazine Article in Print - One Author

Author's Last Name, First Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. Page numbers. 

Works Cited List Example

Campbell, Meagan. "'One Snap, One Frame': A Life in Pictures." Maclean's, vol. 129, no. 26, 04 July 2016, pp. 47-51. 

In-Text Citation Example

(Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Campbell 49)

Magazine Article in Print - Two Authors

Author's Last Name, First Name, and Second Author's First Name Last Name. "Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. Page numbers. 

 Note: Only the first author listed appears in "Last Name, First Name" format. Authors' names are separated by a comma. Before the last author to be listed, add the word "and."

Works Cited List Example

Ainsworth-Vincze, Cameron, and Josh Dehass. "Where Do I Belong?" Maclean's, vol. 123, no. 45, 22 Nov. 2010, pp. 58-59.

In-Text Citation Example

(First Author's Last Name and Second Author's Last Name Page Number)

(Ainsworth-Vincze and Dehass 58)

Magazine Article in Print - Unknown Author

"Title of Article: Subtitle if Any." Title of Magazine, vol. Volume Number, no. Issue Number, Date of Publication, pp. Page numbers. 

Works Cited List Example

"When Eating Breakfast, Make it a Big One." Maclean's, vol. 121, no. 26/27, 7 July 2008, p. 63. 

In-Text Citation Example

("First Word or Words of the Title" Page Number)

("When Eating Breakfast" 63)

Note: This magazine article doesn't list an author, so the first word or words of the title are included in the in-text citation in quotation marks.

In-Text Citation For Two or More Authors/Editors

Number of Authors/Editors In-Text Citation Example
Two

 (Author's Last Name and Author's Last Name Page Number)

 Example: (Case and Daristotle 57)

Three or more

 (Author's Last Name et al. Page Number)

 Example: (Case et al. 57)

How to Cite When You Have Three or More Authors

If you have three or more authors cite only the name of the first author listed with their Last Name, First Name Middle Name followed by a comma et al.

Example: Smith, James, et al.