MLA Citation Guide

Database Article Citations

MLA Format for items found using a library database, such as Academic OneFile, Opposing Viewpoints, JSTOR, and more.

Basic Format:

Author(s). "Title of Article." Title of Periodical, Volume, Issue, Year, Pages. Database Name, DOI or Permalink URL if No DOI Available. 

DOIs and PermaLinks

What Are DOIs and PermaLinks?

  • A DOI (digital object identifier) is a short code given to some types of sources. Example DOI – 10.1111/jvim.14591 
  • A PermaLink is a stable, permanent URL (web address) that does not expire after you log out of a search session. In library databases, the URL in your browser address is often NOT a permalink.

Which Should Be In Your Citation?

  • DOI – If the item you're citing has a DOI, include it in your citation.
  • NO DOI – If what you're citing does not have a DOI, use a permalink.

What Items Have DOIs? Many (not all) scholarly articles originally published in journals have DOIs. Some government publications also have DOIs.

Where Are DOIs Found? If an item has a DOI, it is usually near the title or other publication details such as authors or publication date. Library databases also include DOIs near such details. In research databases, such as Academic OneFile, the MLA citation found by clicking on an article title and then on the Cite button will already include the DOI (if available) or permalink (if no DOI available). You can also find this information by clicking on the article title and looking below the title for a DOI.

Searching with DOIs. Because each DOI is unique, it can be used to search for an item without needing other information. For example, instead of using a long article title and author name to find a specific journal article, you can just search with the DOI.

Keep in mind that searching in Google (or Google Scholar) with a DOI doesn’t always lead to a free full-text version of an article. Often you will be able to find publication details, an article overview (called an abstract), and a portion of the article for free. Search in a library database instead to consistently access full-text articles!

Journal Article Database Examples

One Author (Without DOI)

Molk, Peter. "The Government's Role in Climate Change Insurance." Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review, vol. 43, no. 2, 2016, pp. 411-26. ProQuest,


Two Authors (Without DOI)

Jairo, Fuertes N., and Alexander Hoffman. "Alcohol Consumption and Abuse among College Students: Alarming Rates among the Best and the Brightest." College Student Journal, vol. 50, no. 2, Summer 2016, pp. 236-40. Gale Academic OneFile,


More Than Two Authors (With DOI)

Tormann, Thessa, et al. "Randomness of Megathrust Earthquakes Implied by Rapid Stress Recovery after the Japan Earthquake." Nature Geoscience, vol. 8, no. 2, 2015, pp. 152-158. ProQuest,, doi:


No Author (Without DOI)

"Association Is Prime Mover in Equality Initiative." Policing Today, vol. 16, no. 1, Mar. 2010, p. 8. Gale Academic OneFile,

Magazine & Newspaper Article Database Examples

Newspaper - One Author (Without DOI)

Kesling, Ben. "More College Students Use Marijuana Daily, Study Finds; Survey Shows Daily Pot Smoking Exceeds Daily Cigarette Use on Nation's College Campuses." Wall Street Journal (Online), Sep 01, 2015. ProQuest,

Magazine - One Author (Without DOI)

Heffernan, Virginia. "I Saw the Face of God in a Chip Factory." Wired, vol. 31, no. 5, May 2023, p. 36. Gale General OneFile,


Magazine - Two Authors (Without DOI)

Johnson, Bryan, and Deborah A. Sivas. "How the Enlightenment Ends." The Atlantic, vol. 322, no. 2, Sept. 2018, p. 9. Gale General OneFile,


Magazine - More Than Two Authors (Without DOI)

Jess, Tyehimba, et al. "The 1619 Project." The New York Times Magazine, 18 Aug. 2019, p. 58(L). Gale Academic OneFile,


Magazine - No Author (Without DOI)

"EarthQuaker Devices: Pedal Gurus Take on the Next Frontier: An Amplifier." Music Trades, vol. 163, no. 11, Dec. 2015, p. 109. Gale Academic OneFile,

Articles in Print Citations

MLA Format for articles from periodicals (magazines, newspapers and journals) in print that you physically hold in your hands - NOT articles found in a library database

Basic Format:

Last Name, First Name. "Article Title." Title of Periodical, Day Month Year, Pages.

Print Article Examples

Magazine Article

Fisher, Daniel. "A Brief History of Energy Boondoggles." Forbes, 24 Nov. 2008, p. 82.


Scholarly Journal Article

Brian, Brian K. "Renewable Energy Enters Commercial Era." Power Engineering, vol. 108, no. 4, 2004, pp. 28-41.


Newspaper Article

Wald, Matthew L. "Debate on Clean Energy Lease to a Regional Battle Over Jobs." New York Times, 14 July 2009, sec. A, p. 13.

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