Expressing Numbers MLA

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Expressing Numbers: MLA

Use Numerals for the Following:

1. In subjects where numbers are infrequent

a. Numbers that cannot be written in one or two words, e.g., 2½, 101, and 1,275

2. In subjects where numbers are frequent, e.g., a scientific paper or statistical study

a. Quantities involving units of measurement, e.g., 5 milliliters

b. Numbers that are presented together, e.g., statistical findings

c. Numbers that are being compared, e.g., In the ten years covered by the study, the number of participating institutions in the United States doubled, reaching 90, and membership in the six-state region rose from 4 to 15.

3. In all contexts

a. Numbers accompanying abbreviations or symbols, e.g., 6 lbs, 3%, 8 KB, $9, and 2◦ (BUT in contexts where numbers are infrequent, you can spell out percentages and monetary amounts in words if you can use three or fewer words. Do not use both words and numerals.)

b. Numbers in addresses, e.g., 4401 13th Avenue

c. Numbers in dates, e.g., April 1, 2001

d. Numbers in decimal fractions, e.g., 8.3

e. Numbers in page references, e.g., page 7

f. Numbers in times of day, e.g., 4:20 p.m. (BUT time expressed in quarter and half hours and hours followed by o’clock are given in words.)

Use Words for the Following:

1. Numbers beginning sentences

2. Centuries and decades (in lower case) (With decades, numerals can be used, but whichever form you choose, be consistent.)

3. In subjects where numbers are infrequent

a. Numbers that can be written in one or two words, e.g., one, thirty-six, three million, one hundred, and fifteen hundred

Use Words and Numerals for the Following:

1. Very large numbers, e.g., 4.5 million

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