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MLA Citation Guide (MLA 8th Edition): Government Documents

Formatting

Note: For your Works Cited list, all citations should be double spaced and have a hanging indent.

A "hanging indent" means that each subsequent line after the first line of your citation should be indented by 0.5 inches.

Tips

Access Date

Works from the web can typically be changed or removed at any time, so while it's optional, the date which you accessed material is often important.  This is especially true when there is no date specifying when an item was produced.This date will be added to the end of the entry. E.g. Accessed 23 July 2016.

Dates

The format of dates is: Day Month (shortened) Year. E.g. 5 Sept. 2012.

Whether to give the year alone or include a month and day depends on your source: write the full date as you find it there.

If no date is listed, omit it unless you can find that information available in a reliable source.

Titles

Capitalize the first letter of every important word in the title. You do not need to capitalize words such as: in, of, or an.

If there is a colon (:) in the title, include what comes after the colon (also known as the subtitle).

Government Document From a Website

Name of Government Department, Agency or Committee. Title of Document: Subtitle if Given. Edition if given and is not first edition, Publication Date, URL. Accessed Access Date.

Works Cited List Example

 United States, Department of Education. Tips for Helping Students Recovering from Traumatic Events. Sept. 2005.  www2.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/recovering/part.html. Accessed 27 Aug. 2016.

In-Text Citation Example

 (Department, Agency, or Committee)

 Example: (Department of Education)

 Note: You can use a shortened form of the Department, Agency, or Committee by listing the first word or words of the full name.

Government Document in Print

Name of National, State or Local Government, Name of Government Department, Agency or Committee. Title of Document: Subtitle if Given. Edition if given and is not first edition, Publication Date.

Works Cited List Example

 United States, Department of Homeland Security, Citizenship, and Immigration Services. Welcome to the United States: A Guide for New Immigrants. Government Printing Office, 2007.

In-Text Citation Example

 (Department, Agency, or Committee)

 Example: (Department of Homeland Security 4)

 Note: You can use a shortened form of the Department, Agency, or Committee by listing the first word or words of the full name.

Government Document From a Database

Name of National, State or Local Government, Name of Government Department, Agency or Committee. Title of Document: Subtitle if Given. Edition if given and is not first edition, Publication information, Publication Date. Database Name, URL. Accessed date.

Works Cited List Example

 United States, Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "CDC Awards $60 Million to Help States and Territories Battle Zika." CDC Press Release, 21 July 2016. SIRS Government Reporter, www.northeaststate.edu:3443:/login?url=sks.sirs.com/webapp/article?artno=0000384364&type=ART. Accessed 27 Aug. 2016.

In-Text Citation Example

 (Department, Agency, or Committee)

 Example: (Centers for Disease Control)

 Note: You can use a shortened form of the Department, Agency, or Committee by listing the first word or words of the full name.