menu

How to Cite an Essay in a Collection of Essays


Citing an essay in a collection of essays or anthology requires following a very specific format when using both MLA (Modern Language Association) and APA (American Psychological Association) style. According to the Purdue Online Writing Lab, writers should use APA style when writing about the social sciences and MLA style for the humanities and liberal arts. Check with the latest style guidelines before citing an essay in an anthology since the guidelines are often changed.

MLA Style

Write the author's last name followed by a comma, the first name and a period. After the period, write the name of the essay in quotations, placing the period inside the last quotation. Remember to capitalize the first letter of each word in the essay title except for articles such as "an" and "the."

Look at the title of the anthology and write it in italics after the essay title, followed by a period. If you are hand writing the citation, underline the title instead of using italics. Use the abbreviation "Ed." before writing the editor's name. Use a period after writing the editor's name.

Write the location of publication followed by a colon and the publisher's name. Then use a comma and write the year of publication. If the location is a known or common city such as London or Nashville, you do not need to write the state or country. When writing the publisher's name, use abbreviations when possible. For example, write "UP" for "University Press" and "U of Chicago" for "University of Chicago."

List the page ranges for the essay, for example, "7-10" followed by a period. Then write the medium of publication. If the anthology was online, write "web" or if it was a physical book, write "Print." End the citation with a period.

Follow this example offered by the Purdue Online Writing Lab: Harris, Muriel. "Talk to Me: Engaging Reluctant Writers." A Tutor's Guide: Helping Writers One to One. Ed. Ben Rafoth. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2000. 24-34. Print.

APA Style

Write the author's last name followed by a comma and his first initial and a period. Place the year of publication in parentheses and write the period outside the parentheses.

Write the title of the essay, ending with a period. Only capitalize the first letter in the first word of the title. Starting with the word "In" write the editor's name followed by "(Ed.)," a comma and the title of the anthology. Italicize or underline the anthology's title and end with a period.

Place the page numbers of the essay in parentheses followed with a period. Write the place of publication, a colon, the publisher and a period.

Use the example offered by the Concordia University Libraries website as a model: Bjork, R. A. (1989). Retrieval inhibition as an adaptive mechanism in human memory. In H. L. Roediger III, & F. I. M. Craik (Eds.), Varieties of memory & consciousness (pp. 309-330). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

About the Author

This article was written by the Pen & the Pad team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about Pen & the Pad, contact us