How to Cite a Lecture in MLA (8th Edition) | Format and Examples

In MLA style, the following format is used to cite a lecture or speech.

MLA format Speaker last name, First name. “Lecture Title.” Course or Event Name, Day Month Year, Venue, City.
MLA Works Cited entry Dent, Gina. “Anchored to the Real: Black Literature in the Wake of Anthropology.” Moving Together: Activism, Art, and Education, 16 May 2018, The Black Archives, Amsterdam.
MLA in-text citation (Dent)

This format also applies to other types of oral presentation, such as a conference panel or a public talk. The format for citing PowerPoint slides is slightly different. To cite a video recording of a lecture, follow the format for citing videos, listing the speaker in the author position.

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Lecture titles and event names

The title of the lecture appears in quotation marks. You can usually find the title in the course syllabus, the conference program, or publicity materials for the talk.

After the title, you add the name of the course, conference, or event the lecture was part of. Don’t use italics or quotation marks for this part.

Coyle, John. “Week 3: Modernism and Memory.” English Literature 2A, 21 Sept. 2009, U of Glasgow. Lecture.

It is possible to add more than one event name here. For example, conferences are often divided into themed sessions; after the title of the presentation, you can add both the session and the conference name if relevant.

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Lecture locations

Often the location of the lecture will appear in the venue name. For example, many university names include the city where they are located. Note that “University” is abbreviated to “U” in an MLA Works Cited entry.

Halberstam, Jack. “Trans*: A Quick and Quirky Guide to Gender Variance.” Doing Gender, 26 Mar. 2018, Utrecht U.

If the city is not already named, add it directly after the venue. If necessary, you can also add the state or country for clarity (for example, if there are multiple cities with the same name).

Descriptive labels

A short descriptive label (e.g. Lecture, Presentation, Keynote) can optionally be added at the end of the entry if it’s otherwise ambiguous what type of source you’re citing. A label can also be useful to clarify when you’re referring to a handout or slides (e.g. Lecture handout, PowerPoint presentation).

Coyle, John. “Week 3: Modernism and Memory.” English Literature 2A, 21 Sept. 2009, U of Glasgow. Lecture handout.

MLA in-text citation for a lecture

When you use information or ideas from a lecture in your paper, an MLA in-text citation requires only the last name of the lecturer, either in the text itself or in parentheses after the relevant information.


If you refer to a specific slide of a PowerPoint or page of a handout, you can add this to the in-text citation.

(Halberstam, slide 4)

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.

McCombes, S. (2024, March 05). How to Cite a Lecture in MLA (8th Edition) | Format and Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved June 18, 2024, from

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Shona McCombes

Shona has a bachelor's and two master's degrees, so she's an expert at writing a great thesis. She has also worked as an editor and teacher, working with students at all different levels to improve their academic writing.