How to Cite a Transcript

Transcripts can be a highly valuable resource for reports on journalism or media. Television and radio transcripts often contain current events commentary and information which can bolster a written argument. Citations in Modern Language Association (MLA) style require using an in-text parenthetical citation as well as documenting the transcript in a bibliographic entry. Proper citations add value to your writing and ensure no copyright or plagiarism occurs in any report or paper.

Citing in the Bibliography

Step 1

Start the bibliographic entry with the title of the transcript in quotation marks followed by a period.

Step 2

Follow the title with the program name and broadcaster of the transcript. For example: All Things Considered and NPR. The name of the program should be put into italics.

Step 3

Follow this information with the date of the original speech, the type of source, for example the web, and the date the source was accessed.

Step 4

Conclude the entry with the type of source you are citing, a transcript in this case.

An example of an entry looks like this:

“Letters Sent to President Dwight D. Eisenhower on the Brown vs. Board of Education Decision.” All Things Considered. National Public Radio. 17 May 2004. Web. 18 August 2008. Transcript.

Citing in Text

Step 1

Cite a source with a shortened version of the title. If the single word title is too similar to another source's title, use a shortened version of the title.

For example, the original transcript title might be "President Obama Calls for Thorough and Timely Confirmation for Judge Sonia Sotomayor." The parenthetical citation could read (“President Obama Calls”).

This citation will make it clear which transcript or source you are using.

Step 2

Put the citation at the end of the sentence, in parenthesis .

Step 3

Place quotation marks around the name of the transcript.

For example:

The latest news predicts a sharp drop in consumer spending (“Numbers”)

This entry should go on a separate “Works Cited” page which will be attached at the end of the essay or report.

All bibliographic entries should indent every line after the first line.

Edit all citations and works cited pages.

Always cite any information or quote that is not common knowledge and comes directly from a source.

Cite this Article