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How to Cite Wikipedia in MLA Format

If you’re reading a Wikipedia page or piece of information on the internet, how do you determine the source and credibility of the data used? You’ll probably check out the citations. Citations offer readers an insight into where the information used is taken from.

So, if you often create Wikipedia pages or write articles, citations are essential. According to Wikipedia’s verifiability guidelines, sources are required for questionable material and wherever quotations are mentioned.

Wikipedia citation is integral as it shows you’re responsible enough to consider credibility. It also indicates that you were responsible enough to list reputable sources to support your work.

Although there are various ways to cite Wikipedia, the most common is in MLA format. If you’re wondering how to cite Wikipedia in MLA style, here’s a quick guide by our experts.

How to Cite Wikipedia in MLA Style?

Before we figure out how to cite Wikipedia in MLA format, let’s learn more about this format. MLA format is a citation method that the Modern Language Association introduced. This organization came into being to introduce policies on all aspects of literature and language. So, they have guidelines on paper layouts, grammar usage, etc.

What does a Wikipedia Citation Looks Like in MLA Format?

Generally, citations in MLA format comprise two components—the in-text citation and the “works cited” section.

Citing Wikipedia articles or pages is a bit different in MLA format. This is mostly because Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia available to everyone, which means a page or article can have multiple authors. As a result, the author element won’t be mentioned in a Wikipedia citation.

Here’s a general structure to clear your thoughts on what does a Wikipedia citation looks like in MLA format:

“Page name.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, Wikimedia Foundation, Day Month Year last updated, permalink.

Here are a bunch of examples for you to understand MLA format for citing Wikipedia:

  • “World War I.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, February 3 2023. Web. February 6 2023.
  • “Grammy Awards.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, February 6 2023. Web. February 6 2023.

We understand these links are slightly different than the format given up, and you’ll soon understand why.

Do You Need to Cite Wikipedia Articles?

Learning to cite Wikipedia in MLA format isn’t a challenging task, but before that, it’s vital to understand when you should cite a Wikipedia article. As mentioned, citations serve as references for information used in research papers or elsewhere

So, whenever you’re stuck on the question, do you need to cite Wikipedia articles, just ask yourself: are you using any quotations from the article? Are you adding any content based on the information mentioned in the Wikipedia article? If yes, you’ll need to cite it.

Let’s take a quick look at how to cite a Wikipedia article without any further ado.

How to Cite a Wikipedia Article Properly?

Although there are two ways how to cite a Wikipedia article properly, the easiest way to do that is with the help of Wikipedia’s tools. If you want to keep things simple and don’t want to go the extra mile to get the citations right, this method is perfect for you.

Step 1:

The first thing on the “how to cite a Wikipedia article” process is to open Wikipedia. So, quickly fire up your browser and go to Wikipedia’s homepage.

Step 2:

Once on the homepage, type in the topic or article you need to cite in the search box and hit the enter button. If you already have the Wikipedia link of the article you wish to quote, you can skip the first step and directly visit the link.

Step 3:

Once the page is loaded, look for the tools section on the page. You can easily spot this option on the left side of the page underneath the logo of Wikipedia.

Step 4:

After locating the tools section, you’ll notice many options below. Amongst these options, “cite this page” will also be given. You’ll be shown multiple citations in various formats for the respective article upon clicking this link.

Step 5:

You can then scroll down until you finally find the citation in MLA style. The citation will be listed under the MLA style manual. The citation will be available in the following format:

  • Wikipedia contributors. “House of Commons.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, January 8 2023. Web. February 6 2023.
  • Wikipedia contributors. “Christmas.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, February 1 2023. Web. February 6 2023.

So, if you spot a citation in a similar format, that’s what you’re looking for.

Step 6:

You’re now free to copy the citation and paste it wherever your work needs to be cited. When you cite a Wikipedia article using the tools offered by the platform, it displays Wikipedia contributors at the beginning as the author.

There’s no hard and fast rule about this bit of the MLA citation. So, it’s your wish if you want to keep this part or get rid of it, as MLA’s rules permit both options.

You’ll also notice how the citation doesn’t have a link, as we mentioned in the format. That’s because MLA offers don’t demand a URL. However, it’s sometimes helpful, which is why individuals manually add it when citing pages.

How to Cite a Wikipedia Page?

So, you’ve already learned how to cite a Wikipedia article properly. Now it’s time to work on how to cite a Wikipedia page.

By now, you’re already familiar with the MLA citation style, but there are more formats, namely, APA and Chicago. In this part of the blog, we’ll teach you how to cite a Wikipedia page in all three styles. So, let’s get going.

MLA Format

As you probably know, Wikipedia is an open platform, and various authors often work on the same Wikipedia page or article together, which means there are multiple authors. So, citing wiki pages would mean you’d have to navigate without the author part.

Here are a bunch of steps to follow in citing a wiki page:

  1. Look for the wiki page title and place it in quotes.
  2. Add the publisher’s name in italics. Since this is published on Wikipedia, the publisher is Wikipedia.
  3. Don’t forget to include the page’s date, located at the bottom of the page.
  4. Put in the URL of the page, and you’re done.

How to cite Wikipedia in APA Style?

APA format is different from the MLA style. Here’s how to cite Wikipedia in APA style:
  1. Put in the title of the Wikipedia page. Make sure to add a period after that.
  2. Next up is adding the publication date. If you don’t have a publication date on the Wikipedia page, just add (n.d.).
  3. Mention the retrieval date along with the URL and the website’s name. This informs the reader on where they can find the information.
For example: Wikipedia contributors. (2023, February 1). Christmas. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 12:09, February 6, 2023, from

How to cite Wikipedia in Chicago Style?

Just like the APA format, Chicago also has simple structures for websites that don’t have authors, such as Wikipedia. However, there are various ways to do that.
  1. Choose the format that you want to utilize. Once you’ve chosen, you can begin citing the Wikipedia page. In this style, you can start with the website rather than the title or vice versa; the choice is yours. Keep in mind that you need to place the title in quotes and italicize the website’s name.
  2. Once you’ve done that, you can add the revision date, which is located at the bottom of the page.
  3. Lastly, mention the website’s URL, and you’re good to go.
For example: Are you using information from a Wiki page or article? Then, make sure to cite it. Are you interested in getting a Wikipedia page created for yourself? Say no more! We bring you the perfect partners to help you— The Wiki Inc. At The Wiki Inc, our professional team is well-equipped to create wiki pages and offer a wide range of services. Hurry up and reach out to our experts to avail our services.
Yes, MLA format utilizes the title case, so primary words are capitalized.

A common problem when using information from Wikipedia is plagiarism. However, you can avoid that by using quotation marks around three words quoted from the source.

While citations can be done using the tools offered by Wikipedia and manually too, it’s often much simpler to use the tool. That’s because it streamlines and quickens the process, especially when you have a list of citations to mention.

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