Answered By: Erin McDaniel
Last Updated: May 13, 2015     Views: 98924

MLA does not provide exact guidance for handling citations and a Works Cited page in PowerPoints. However, there are still best-practices recommended by Purdue Owl and several universities.

Labelling figures and tables is more straight forward.

The easiest way to handle citations and references is to follow the same rules you would for a paper, and do an in-text citation within the sentence or bullet point, and have a Works Cited page on your last slide.

If for design reasons, you would prefer to put a complete reference on each slide, you can do that and omit a separate Works Cited page. However, keep in mind that if you refer to more than one source on a single slide, including the references on that slide will make it very text-heavy.

In addition to the examples below, I've included a link to Purdue Owl's MLA guide, Holgate Library's PowerPoint in MLA format Guide, and a link to our Cite MLA Style LibGuide.

Here are some examples:

In-Text Citations:


Follow the standard MLA rules for in-text citations.

Works Cited page:


Include a separate Works Cited page. If you don't have room to double space, that's ok. If you have to use bullets, so you can't include a hanging indent, that's ok.

Table Example:

Number the table. Spell out the word "table". Use an Arabic number (not spelled out). On the next line, include a caption, title or brief description.

Underneath the table, include the source information, beginning with Source:. You don't have to include it in your Works Cited page, unless you cite it on another slide.

Illustration or Figure Example:

Underneath the picture, include the figure number. Capitalize the word "figure". Use a "." if you shorten the word, and use an Arabic numeral (don't spell out the number). On the same line, include a caption, title or brief description.

Comments (10)

  1. it's 3am and you saved my life with this.
    by motivated procrastinator on May 24, 2015.
  2. What if I were just implementing visual aid and not mentioning the picture on my powerpoint?
    by motivated procrastinator version 2 on Nov 10, 2015.
  3. Hi Motivated

    You will still need to include information for the visual aid. Use the instructions for a table or illustration.
    by Erin McDaniel on Nov 13, 2015.
  4. Hi! So, will the works cited page for illustrations look like a regular citation page? Thanks so much! And what info can I use to cite, if it's a picture of a book cover, say, or just a random photo that offers no info??
    by DZinna on Apr 05, 2016.
  5. The Works Cited page is handled the same regardless of the format of the sources. How you would cite a book cover depends on a few factors. If there is a known illustrator, follow the rules for citing an illustrated book: http://elmo.academyart.edu/reference-help/mla_citation_guide.html#illBook

    Instead of an illustrator, there may be a cover designer. Examine the verso page, on the backside of the title page (where you find copyright dates, Library of Congress Cataloging info, etc.) and look to see if anyone is credited with cover design. If so, just use the phrase cover designer instead of illustrator.

    For a photo with no name, title, or date, you will "create a title" by writing a description, such as: Untitled Photo of Boy with Puppy. Use n.d. for no date listed.
    A good example is listed in this guide under the heading "Images (With No Author, No Title, No Date)": http://www.cod.edu/library/research/cite/mla/multimedia.htm

    Also look to this guide for the example of citing a photograph under An Original Work of Visual Art: http://elmo.academyart.edu/reference-help/tours_and_tutorials/AAU_Image_Citation_Guide.pdf
    by Erin McDaniel on Apr 09, 2016.
  6. Life savior. Thanks
    by Glad on Oct 25, 2016.
  7. I myself have a pp presentation to do; and I have multiple peices of information from the same book (different pages from the book as well) all on one slide in different bullet points. Do I put a in text citation on each bullet point citing where I got my information from, or is there a easier way to do it that would be less text-consuming?
    by Random Frey on Oct 27, 2016.
  8. Officially, you would have to cite each bullet point differently. However, if your instructor will allow it, you could conceivably just put the page numbers at the end of each bullet point, and the full parenthetical citation at the end of the slide (minus the page numbers). If that looks better, check with your instructor to see if that would be ok.
    by Erin McDaniel on Oct 28, 2016.
  9. I am creating a presentation for a paper, and I was wondering how I would cite images and ideas in the powerpoint in the Chicago style?
    Thank you.
    by Prolix on Jan 12, 2017.
  10. Hi Prolix

    Emory University has a great instruction sheet on this. It includes citing references from a database, website, and for images. Here is the link: http://business.library.emory.edu/documents/faq-handouts/chicago-citation-guide.pdf
    by Erin McDaniel on Jan 13, 2017.

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