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How To Cite A Doctoral Dissertation In The MLA Format: Useful Advice


For an important project like a doctoral dissertation, it is vital to cultivate the habit of keeping track of every source of material or information you are using in writing the project. This makes it easier for you to properly credit those sources to the success of your paper completion. This is known as citation and is usually done in various styles, one of the most popular style being the MLA format. Although the traditional form of citation is done through footnotes, more recent forms are done within the content of your paper where the reader is referred to the “works cited” page where more detailed information about the source is written out.


With the MLA style of citation, readers of your doctoral dissertation are referred to simplified resources reference page through a parenthetical note. This style serves as a particular guideline or rules that should be utilized when formatting in-text citations and bibliographies of your research paper. The full mean is Modern Language Association (MLA). Your work should be properly cited in the MLA style, not minding whether the resources were accessed in hard copies or online. Below are a few reliable tips to help you properly cite your work in the required MLA format.


  • Start with the author’s full name, avoiding the use of initials. For example, Bridgewater, Daniel Robert.
  • After the author’s name, following under is the title of paper, written in italics.

  • The third step is denoting the type of paper being cited. If it is a doctoral dissertation, you write “Diss.”, if it is a master of Sciences thesis, you write “MS thesis” and if on the other hand, it is a master of arts, you cite it as “MA thesis”.

  • The next step is writing out the name of the school and followed by the location of the same school, the year the paper was accepted. If the paper is in hardcopy, then you add “print” after writing the year it was accepted. If the resource was accessed online, the only difference is citing the database where the material was sourced from and the date it was accessed. URLs are no longer required, just the name of the database is enough. An example for hard copy is thus:


    Bridgewater, Daniel Robert. The Importance Of Environmental Impact Assessment. Diss. Georgia State University, Atlanta, 2006. Print.


    Example for dissertation materials sourced online is thus:


    Bridgewater, Daniel Robert. The Importance Of Environmental Impact Assessment. Diss. Georgia State University, Atlanta, 2006. Reality Research And More. Web. 18 May 2013.

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