September 12 2011

Handling long quotations

by Barbie in Uncategorized, Writing

Including long quotations in your paper from a credible source can add richness to the piece and deepen your readers’ understanding of the concept. However, you might not know how to format the quotation. Thankfully, APA and MLA offer guidance on this subject:

  • APA: If your quote exceeds 40 words, set it off as a freestanding block quote. Indent the entire quote .5 inches on the left, and keep the right ragged. Do not use quotation marks, and include the parenthetical citation outside of the end punctuation. Place the author’s name, year of publication, and page number(s) in parenthesis, separated by commas.
  • MLA: If your quote exceeds four lines of text, use a block quote. MLA uses the same block quote format as APA. However, keep in mind that the parenthetical citation in MLA is different. Include the author’s last name and page number with no punctuation.

If you introduce the block quote with the author’s name, then you do not have to include the last name in the parenthetical citation. Both APA and MLA follow this rule.