How to format your references using the Modern Language Review citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Modern Language Review. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Soper, Alan K., ‘Physical Chemistry: Square Ice in a Graphene Sandwich’, Nature, 519.7544 (2015), 417–18
A journal article with 2 authors
Krüger, Frank, and Matthias Ohrnberger, ‘Tracking the Rupture of the Mw = 9.3 Sumatra Earthquake over 1,150 Km at Teleseismic Distance’, Nature, 435.7044 (2005), 937–39
A journal article with 3 authors
Tang, Ri-Yuan, Gang Li, and Jin-Quan Yu, ‘Conformation-Induced Remote Meta-C-H Activation of Amines’, Nature, 507.7491 (2014), 215–20
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Staller, Peter, Jitka Sulitkova, Joanna Lisztwan, Holger Moch, Edward J. Oakeley, and Wilhelm Krek, ‘Chemokine Receptor CXCR4 Downregulated by von Hippel-Lindau Tumour Suppressor PVHL’, Nature, 425.6955 (2003), 307–11

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Jaffe, Joseph, Flip the Funnel (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2010)
An edited book
Jurga, Stefan, Volker A. Erdmann (Deceased), and Jan Barciszewski, eds., Modified Nucleic Acids in Biology and Medicine, RNA Technologies (Cham: Springer International Publishing, 2016)
A chapter in an edited book
Hu, Jun, Zidong Wang, and Huijun Gao, ‘Probability-Guaranteed $$H_\infty $$ H ∞ Finite-Horizon Filtering with Sensor Saturations’, in Nonlinear Stochastic Systems with Network-Induced Phenomena: Recursive Filtering and Sliding-Mode Design, ed. by Zidong Wang and Huijun Gao (Cham: Springer International Publishing, 2015), pp. 101–18

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Modern Language Review.

Blog post
Andrew, Elise, ‘Miniature Spinal Cords Grown In The Lab’, IFLScience (IFLScience, 2014) <> [accessed 30 October 2018]


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office, Applying Agreed-Upon Procedures: Airport and Airway Trust Fund Excise Taxes (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 20 November 2003)

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Hsu, Yi-Ting, ‘Input and Uptake in High School EFL Students’ Multiple-Draft Writing Process: A Case Study of a Taiwanese High School EFL Classroom’ (unpublished Doctoral dissertation, Indiana University, 2017)

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Shpigel, Ben, ‘After 5 Months of Work, U.S. Makes (and Earns) a Vital Point’, New York Times, 12 June 2017, p. B13

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text

About the journal

Full journal titleModern Language Review
ISSN (print)0026-7937
ISSN (online)2222-4319
ScopeLanguage and Linguistics
Literature and Literary Theory
Linguistics and Language

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