MLA Publications

Improve your skills, learn about new developments in the profession, and get the latest on MLA services and activities with MLA publications.

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The Journal of the Medical Library Association (JMLA) is MLA’s open access peer-reviewed scholarly journal, publishing research relevant to health information professionals.  Find out how to publish in or review for the JMLA.

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MLAConnect is MLA’s online publication, featuring the latest resources, professional advice, plus association and member news. View past articles or learn how to submit an article. Selected content from MLAConnect is also sent to members via electronic newsletter weekly.

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MLA Books

MLA books cover topics important to medical librarians. Learn more about our books or how to submit a proposal. Purchase MLA books through our copublishers, Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group. Some older MLA books may still be available through ALA Neal-Schuman.

MLA Style Guide

MLA publication style is based on The Chicago Manual of Style, seventeenth edition (CMS17) (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press; 2017), and Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, eleventh edition (MW11) (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster; 2003). However, MLA reference style is based on the Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals and the National Library of Medicine’s (NLM’s) Citing Medicine: The NLM Style Guide for Authors, Editors, and Publishers.

The MLA Style Guide is designed to guide MLA’s writers and editors on questions of style that are not addressed by CMS17 or MW11 or on which MLA differs from these two authorities. When a question arises, individuals working on MLA publications should consult this manual first, then defer to MW11 for spelling and hyphenation and CMS17 for style and usage if the issue is not discussed here. Examples that are given to help clarify the issue are identified.

A list of references used and recommended by MLA is provided in Appendix A. Writers may also consult back issues of MLA publications for samples. Writers for the Journal of the Medical Library Association (JMLA) should also consult the “Author Guidelines.” The style manual appendixes include MLA preferred spelling and usage, common trade names, acronyms, and journal title abbreviations.

Writers should be aware that editors may have a more comprehensive grasp of MLA style considerations, rules, and exceptions because of the frequency with which they deal with these issues and therefore reserve the right to choose among competing stylistic imperatives. Editors should be aware that writers are often experts in their subject area and may be more sensitive to subtle shifts in meaning that can result from a seemingly straightforward stylistic correction. Both parties should remember that the reader is the priority and, in that spirit, remain flexible without being lax and conscientious without being pedantic.

NOTE: A task group is currently working on revising the MLA Style Guide. Task group members include: Ellen M. Aaronson, AHIP, Katie Arnold, Skye Bickett, AHIP, Jenessa M. McElfresh, AHIP, and Beverly Murphy, AHIP, FMLA.