MLA 9 What's New

The Modern Language Association (MLA) published the 9th edition of their handbook in April 2021, and MLA Citation Maker was updated to align with those guidelines in April 2022. 

MLA has a page that summarizes what is new in the 9th edition of their handbook. This is what's new when it comes to citing sources.


  • Pseudonyms (a name other than an author's real name; pronounced: sue-duh-nim) and online usernames are enclosed in square brackets instead of parentheses.
  • If there is a username, and if the real name is known, include the username in square brackets after the author’s real name. If the real name is not known, include the username, but do not enclose it in square brackets.

Ex. if the real name and username are known:  Fogarty, Mignon [@GrammarGirl]  
Ex. if only the username is known:  @SciFiReader

(See How to Credit Authors and Contributors)  


  • Editors and translators are now known as key contributors, and they should always be credited. 
  • Only credit additional contributors – such as a director, narrator, or conductor – if your research focuses on their contribution. 

(See How to Credit Authors and Contributors)  


  • Long titles or long social media posts may be shortened. Include enough of the title or text to identify it, and add an ellipsis ( . . . ) at the end to indicate it has been shortened.
  • Apps: MLA now has rules for citing a work found in an app. Citation Maker now includes that option when relevant.
  • E-mail: The title is now E-mail instead of the e-mail’s subject line.
  • Social media: Images and videos are sometimes posted without a title or accompanying text, so you must provide a description. Capitalize the first letter of the first word and any proper nouns. 
         Ex: Photo of spring flowers in Oregon
  • Text messages: MLA now has rules for citing text messages. Citation Maker has an updated e-mail template that includes text messages.
  • Video: Citation Maker now has a separate option for films and one for “other online videos.” 

(See How to Capitalize and Punctuate Titles)


  • For e-books and audiobooks, now include ed. in the edition statement.

Ex: e-book ed.
Ex: audiobook ed. 


  • Names of government agencies that have many divisions should be shortened by only keeping the government name and the primary agency. 

Publisher as listed in source:  U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics
Publisher as listed in citation:  U.S. Department of Justice

(See How to Credit Publishers)

Publication Date

  • Use a lowercase for seasons in dates, such as summer 2019.
  • Citation Maker now allows for multiple months to be entered in the Month field for magazine and journal articles. 

Ex: Jan.-Feb. 2022

Web Address or URL

    • Do not include https:// in URLs for citations.
    • You may shorten a URL that runs more than three lines or is longer than the rest of the citation.

    (See How to Format URLs

    Supplemental Element

    • Citation Maker now includes a Supplemental Element field on relevant templates. A supplemental element is optional information that you may want to include in a citation to better identify the source. 
           Ex: Lyrics
           Ex: Transcript

    • The More Examples page includes examples of supplement elements in various places within a citation.


    MLA Handbook. 9th ed., Modern Language Association of America, 2021.

    The MLA Style Center: Writing Resources from the Modern Language Association. Modern Language Association of America, 2021,

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