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MLA Writing Format

General Formatting Guidelines

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13.1 Formatting a Research Paper

Title Page
How to Format a Research Paper
MLA General Format

The brief citations included in the body of your paper correspond to the more detailed citations provided at the end of the paper in the references section. Again, this information allows your reader to follow up on the sources you cited and do additional reading about the topic if desired.

The specific format of entries in the list of references varies slightly for different source types, but the entries generally include the following information:. If an entry continues for more than one line, the second line and each subsequent line are indented five spaces. Review the following example. In APA style, book and article titles are formatted in sentence case, not title case. Sentence case means that only the first word is capitalized, along with any proper nouns.

This is a derivative of Writing for Success by a publisher who has requested that they and the original author not receive attribution, originally released and is used under CC BY-NC-SA. For uses beyond those covered by law or the Creative Commons license, permission to reuse should be sought directly from the copyright owner. Apply general APA style and formatting conventions in a research paper.

General Formatting Guidelines This chapter provides detailed guidelines for using the citation and formatting conventions developed by the American Psychological Association, or APA. These are the major components of an APA-style paper: Title page Abstract Body, which includes the following: Headings and, if necessary, subheadings to organize the content In-text citations of research sources References page All these components must be saved in one document, not as separate documents.

Title Page The title page of your paper includes the following information: Abstract The next page of your paper provides an abstract , or brief summary of your findings.

Exercise 1 Write an abstract summarizing your paper. Tip Depending on your field of study, you may sometimes write research papers that present extensive primary research, such as your own experiment or survey.

Margins, Pagination, and Headings APA style requirements also address specific formatting concerns, such as margins, pagination, and heading styles, within the body of the paper. Use these general guidelines to format the paper: Set the top, bottom, and side margins of your paper at 1 inch. Use double-spaced text throughout your paper. Use a standard font, such as Times New Roman or Arial, in a legible size to point.

Use continuous pagination throughout the paper, including the title page and the references section. Page numbers appear flush right within your header.

Section headings and subsection headings within the body of your paper use different types of formatting depending on the level of information you are presenting. Exercise 2 Begin formatting the final draft of your paper according to APA guidelines.

Your title page The abstract you created in Note The following heading styles used in APA formatting are listed in order of greatest to least importance: Section headings use centered, boldface type. Headings use title case, with important words in the heading capitalized.

Subsection headings use left-aligned, boldface type. Headings use title case. The third level uses left-aligned, indented, boldface type.

Headings use a capital letter only for the first word, and they end in a period. The fourth level follows the same style used for the previous level, but the headings are boldfaced and italicized. The fifth level follows the same style used for the previous level, but the headings are italicized and not boldfaced. Exercise 3 Working with the document you developed in Note Because Jorge used only level 1 headings, his Exercise 3 would look like the following: Citation Guidelines In-Text Citations Throughout the body of your paper, include a citation whenever you quote or paraphrase material from your research sources.

Writing at Work APA is just one of several different styles with its own guidelines for documentation, formatting, and language usage. Depending on your field of interest, you may be exposed to additional styles, such as the following: Determined by the Modern Languages Association and used for papers in literature, languages, and other disciplines in the humanities.

Outlined in the Chicago Manual of Style and sometimes used for papers in the humanities and the sciences; many professional organizations use this style for publications as well. Associated Press AP style. Used by professional journalists. References List The brief citations included in the body of your paper correspond to the more detailed citations provided at the end of the paper in the references section.

The specific format of entries in the list of references varies slightly for different source types, but the entries generally include the following information: Tip In APA style, book and article titles are formatted in sentence case, not title case. Key Takeaways Following proper citation and formatting guidelines helps writers ensure that their work will be taken seriously, give proper credit to other authors for their work, and provide valuable information to readers.

Working ahead and taking care to cite sources correctly the first time are ways writers can save time during the editing stage of writing a research paper. APA papers usually include an abstract that concisely summarizes the paper. APA papers use a specific headings structure to provide a clear hierarchy of information. In APA papers, in-text citations usually include the name s of the author s and the year of publication. In-text citations correspond to entries in the references section, which provide detailed bibliographical information about a source.

Introduction to Writing 1. End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 2: What Makes a Good Sentence? End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 3: End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 4: Which Word Is Right? End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 5: Help for English Language Learners 5. End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 6: Separating Ideas and Shaping Content 6. End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 7: End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 8: How Do I Begin?

End-of-Chapter Exercises Chapter 9: From Start to Finish 9. Follow the rules for capitalization in the MLA Handbook 67—68 , and italicize only the words that you would italicize in the text.

Do not use a period after your title or after any heading in the paper e. Begin your text on a new, double-spaced line after the title, indenting the first line of the paragraph half an inch from the left margin.

A research paper does not normally need a title page, but if the paper is a group project, create a title page and list all the authors on it instead of in the header on page 1 of your essay. If your teacher requires a title page in lieu of or in addition to the header, format it according to the instructions you are given. Number all pages consecutively throughout the research paper in the upper right-hand corner, half an inch from the top and flush with the right margin.

Type your last name, followed by a space, before the page number fig. Do not use the abbreviation p. Your writing program will probably allow you to create a running head of this kind that appears automatically on every page.

Some teachers prefer that no running head appear on the first page. The list of works cited appears at the end of the paper, after any endnotes. Begin the list on a new page. The list contains the same running head as the main text.

The page numbering in the running head continues uninterrupted throughout. For example, if the text of your research paper including any endnotes ends on page 10, the works-cited list begins on page Center the title, Works Cited , an inch from the top of the page fig.

If the list contains only one entry, make the heading Work Cited. Double-space between the title and the first entry. Begin each entry flush with the left margin; if an entry runs more than one line, indent the subsequent line or lines half an inch from the left margin. This format is sometimes called hanging indention , and you can set your writing program to create it automatically for a group of paragraphs.

Hanging indention makes alphabetical lists easier to use. Double-space the entire list. Continue it on as many pages as necessary. Place tables and illustrations as close as possible to the parts of the text to which they relate.

A table is usually labeled Table , given an arabic numeral, and titled. Type both label and title flush left on separate lines above the table, and capitalize them as titles do not use all capital letters. Give the source of the table and any notes immediately below the table in a caption. To avoid confusion between notes to the text and notes to the table, designate notes to the table with lowercase letters rather than with numerals. Double-space throughout; use dividing lines as needed fig.

Any other type of illustrative visual material—for example, a photograph, map, line drawing, graph, or chart—should be labeled Figure usually abbreviated Fig. If the caption of a table or illustration provides complete information about the source and the source is not cited in the text, no entry for the source in the works-cited list is necessary.

Musical illustrations are labeled Example usually abbreviated Ex. Pyotr Ilich Tchaikovsky, Symphony no. Use a high-quality printer.

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For example, if the text of your research paper (including any endnotes) ends on page 10, the works-cited list begins on page Center the title, Works Cited, an inch from the top of the page (fig. 3).

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MLA Format Papers: Step-by-step Tips for Writing Research Essays Jerz > Writing > Academic > [ Titles | Thesis Statements | Blueprinting | Quoting | Citing | MLA Format ] ) If you’ve been asked to submit a paper in MLA style, your instructor is asking you to format the page and present the content in a .

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MLA is the formatting style of the Modern Language Association. It is used in areas such as English studies, comparative literature and foreign language. Writing a research paper using MLA style is a bit different from other formats. MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (8 th ed.), offers examples for the general format of MLA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the Works Cited page.

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How to Cite a Paper in MLA November 07, How to Write If you are a high school or college student, then there will definitely be a time when you find yourself in a position in which you need to cite a research paper, dissertation, annotated bibliography etc. Sep 27,  · To write a research paper, start by researching your topic at the library, online, or using an academic database. Once you've found at least 5 reputable sources, outline the information you've learned through your research. Then, come up with a sentence thesis to base your paper off of%().