Lesson 2

The Goal:

Learn more about MLA citation style and what is expected of you as an author of academic research papers and you will write your first academic essay for the course.

*A Special Note About MLA: MLA stands for the Modern Language Association. This association publishes a handbook (with updates every few years) that provides the formatting standards for academic papers. You are required to understand and apply the formatting styles outlined by the MLA for your papers in this course.

This course does not provide you with tutorials or examples of every possible type of source and its corresponding citation. You are expected to be able to use the tools you have to find out how to cite these things yourself. For instance, if you interview your grandfather for a research paper on the Vietnam War, YOU must determine how to cite such a source. You will be held accountable for citing any and all of your sources, regardless of whether your instructor has covered the details of a particular kind of source.

See the page entitled "MLA" for additional resources.

You can also try this interactive quiz to see if you understand some of the basic formatting concepts:

*If you're having trouble viewing the video, you may want to try using the Chrome browser.


What to Read:


  1. Beyond Black on White: Document Design and Formatting in the Writing Classroom' by Michael J. Klein and Kristi L. Shackelford in Writing Spaces, Vol 2.
  2. The MLA section  A Writer’s Reference  
  3.  “Treasure Hunt' by   Alain de Botton in Lapham’s Quarterly
  4.  “State of Play' by Mike Deri Smith in The Morning News
  5. Everything Changes, or Why MLA Isn’t (Always) Right' by Janice R. Walker in  Writing Spaces, Vol 2.


Writing Exercise:

This week, instead of a formal writing exercise, you will be taking a quiz on some of the finer points of MLA citation style.

This quiz can be taken in Blackboard by clicking on "MLA Quiz" in the right hand menu.   You must achieve a score of 80% or better in order to pass this course. You can take it as many times as you wish, but no score less than 80% will be recorded. Although it's open book, please make sure you've read pp. 353-412 in A Writer's Reference beforehand.  

Go to the Discussion page for your section and contribute to Discussion #2


Submission Checklist:

  • MLA Quiz (20 points - WA 2)
  • 2-paragraph contribution to the Discussion page for your section: either UX1, UX2 or UX3. (30 Points)