How to Cite Word Count in an MLA Works Cited

By Joshua Laud

When you write a scholarly work, or academic essay, you could be required to adhere to a referencing style such as MLA. The MLA Style and Guide to Scholarly Publishing (often referred to simply as MLA) is one of the major referencing styles used by academics. Referencing style guides have techniques for your entire document's format. Publishing word counts in MLA is not a necessary step, however the MLA does outline the content which the word count should include. If your tutor has requested a printed word count, this may follow an expected placement, but you should always check with that tutor first.

Step 1

Count all of the text excluding your 'Works Cited' list, any appendices, and any citations you have included. This is the selection of text that MLA considers to be important as your word count.

Step 2

Consult your tutor or lecturer. The MLA handbook does not specify an exact location for the word count, so before you add it yourself it is important to research yourself.

Step 3

Insert your word count as directed by your tutor. The word count is a personal preference and not in the MLA handbook, so insert it as directed.