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Referencing style - MLA: Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI)

A guide to using the MLA referencing system for in-text citations and reference lists.

Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) - Text and Image Outputs

Text Output:

You will need to confirm with your unit coordinator, if you are permitted to use Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) such as ChatGPT in your assessments. If it is used, ALL of the content that is generated must be referenced.

MLA recommend referencing content that is generated from an AI tool using the following elements:

Author. "Name of AI." Website name, Web address.

In-text example

"The act of citing computer generated information is growing in this day and age. This is evident by the very fact that over 100 million people have used it in the first month of its release to the world!" (Open AI).

List of Works Cited example:

Open AI. "ChatGPT." Welcome to ChatGPT, 


Image Output:

To cite an AI generated image you created yourself, you will need to include a caption, the prompt you used, the AI tool and version used and the date the image was generated. Below we have provided guidance on how to format the in-text and works cited references. 

In-text example:

Fig. 1. "Create an image that encapsulates how to find the best evidence in a Library. Don't include any people in the image" prompt, Copilot Designer, MicroSoft, 26 Apr. 2024, 

List of works cited example:

Instead of including all the citation information in the in-text citation, you can include the information in the list of works cited. For more information on citing generative AI images you have created yourself, please look here

If you would like to cite an AI generated image you have found in a published work, you will need to include the person that created it, a caption, the year it was created, the AI tool used and the URL of the published source. Below we have provided guidance on how to format the in-text and works cited references. 

In-text example

Fig. 1. Alice Rosa, Robots masquerading as journalists. 2024. Adobestock Firefly,

List of works cited example: NB: the example provided below is for report published on the web. 

Attard, Monica, et al. Gen AI and Journalism. Centre for Media Transition, University of Technology Sydney, 2024,

(NB: The example provided is for a Report. Depending on the published source, you will need to reference the respective published source, according to the conventions for that specific source).  

Please note: The information in this guide is subject to change as guidance on referencing AI tools continues to evolve. 


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