This handout presumes you already know why you should cite your sources to establish your authority, to introduce persuasive evidence, to avoid plagiarism , etc. For a resource to help you determine how to cite a specific source, see the MLA Bibliography Builder. To fully cite a source requires two stages.
When the passage you want to quote is less than three lines long, use inline style. Here we have two brief passages, taken from the same page of the same source, so we can handle both with a single parenthetical citation. We can save space, and make it much easier on our reader, if we paraphrase:. This part can be tedious and tricky; leave yourself plenty of time to do it. Exactly what goes into each item in your bibliography depends on what kind of item it is. The following pages give you some questions to answer, then let you push a button to get an individual works-cited entry.
Use typical, high quality printer or copy paper. There are two options when it comes to creating the MLA header for your project:. The first item typed on the MLA format paper should be your full name. Position your name one inch from the top and left margins of the page.
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- The Art of the Research Paper Heading: 5 Tips for Success.
Add a double space beneath your name, and type the name of your instructor. Align the title so it sits in the center of the MLA format paper. The title should be written in standard lettering, without underlines, bold font, italicized font, or any quotation marks. Only include italics if your title includes the title of another source. Most research papers use a standard MLA format heading, like the one seen above.
If your instructor requires you to create a standalone title page, ask him or her for specifications. We recommend you use an MLA header for your project.
A bit more about Heading Styles in APA & MLA...
A running head is a brief heading that is placed in the top right corner of every page in a project. Here is an example of a running head that might be seen in the top right corner of a research paper:. The running head is placed half an inch from the top margin and one inch from the right margin of the page. Try looking in the settings area where page numbers or headers can be added or modified. Quite often, the running head and page numbers begin on the second page, but your instructor may ask you to include the running head on the first page of the assignment.
As always, if your instructor provides you with specific directions, follow his or her guidelines. Use one-inch margins around the entire page. The running head should be the only item seen in the one inch margin see above for more on running heads. Most word processing programs automatically default to using one inch margins.
Check the page settings section of the program to locate the margin size.
Learn more on justified wording and other guidelines. Note : the instructions in this link follow the 7th edition of the Handbook. The same justification rules apply in the 8th edition. If your professor requests you use 7th edition guidelines for your work cited MLA format page, click here for more information. Indent the first word in every paragraph.
Sentences should begin one half inch from the left margin. It is not necessary to manually measure half an inch. Like all other sections of the assignment, paragraphs should be double spaced. Quotes are added into assignments to help defend an argument, prove a point, add emphasis, or simply liven up a project. Quotes should not take up the majority of your paper or assignment.
Quotes should be sprinkled sparingly throughout. Use direct quotes from outside sources to enhance and expand on your own writing and ideas. In the above example, Dan Gutman is the author of the book that this quote is pulled from. This is an example of a proper MLA style citation in the body of a project. The Modern Language Association generally promotes the use of references as described in the sections above, but footnotes and endnotes are also acceptable forms of references to use in your paper.
Footnotes and endnotes are helpful to use in a variety of circumstances. Here are a few scenarios when it may seem appropriate to use this type of referencing:. To include a footnote or endnote, add a superscript number at the end of the sentence the footnote or endnote refers to.
College paper heading
They can be included mid-sentence if necessary, but be sure to add it after any punctuation, such as commas or periods. On the last page of the assignment, the writer includes the full references for the books by Isadora, Parr, and Velazquez. Need further help with quotes or MLA format examples?
Learn more about the style in the news. Paraphrases are created when text or speech from another source are added into a project, but the writer chooses to summarize them and weave in his or her own writing and writing style. Even though the writer modifies the information from another source, it is still necessary to credit the source using proper MLA format. Paraphrased information uses the same MLA reference format as stated in the section directly above this one. Steve Jobs encouraged students at Stanford to continue with their determination, drive, and ambitious behavior.
They should never be simply satisfied with the status quo. They should continue to push themselves despite possible obstacles and failures. To develop a well-written paraphrase, follow these simple, step-by-step instructions. An essential part of the research process involves adding direct quotes and paraphrases into projects. When it comes to paraphrases, writers are able to take a block of text and shrink the scope of it into the their papers.
Paper writers can also use paraphrases to demonstrate their ability to analyze and reiterate information in a meaningful and relevant way. Paraphrases come out on top. The ultimate goal of a research project is to have your voice and research merged together as one. Paraphrases allow just that.
When you combine information from outside sources with your own writing style, it demonstrates your ability as a researcher to showcase your understanding and analyzation of a topic. References are placed after the quotes and paraphrases, and also at the end of an assignment. MLA research paper format requires that the entire research paper or MLA format essay includes double-spaced lines. Double-spaced lines should be found in between the written body of the work, in the heading, and also on the MLA reference page. While it may seem tempting to place a few extra lines between the heading, title, and beginning of the paper, lines should all be double spaced.
In an MLA paper, it is acceptable to use any font type that is easy to read. Two of the most commonly used fonts are Arial and Times New Roman. It is important for the reader to be able to distinguish the difference between italicized and regular font, so if you choose a font style different than Arial or Times New Roman, make sure the difference between the two type styles is evident.
The use of a point font size is recommended as this is the default size for many word processing programs.
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It is acceptable to use another standard size, such as point or Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind in relation to punctuation marks. Commas: Use commas when it makes sense for individuals to pause while reading or to help with understanding. Concluding Sentences: When closing out a sentence with the use of a punctuation mark, begin the following sentence after one space, not two spaces. Quotes: When including a quote in your paper or assignment, place the period outside of the parentheses, at the end of the entire sentence.
Notice that the period is on the outside of the parentheses, not at the end of the quote itself. Abbreviations are commonly used in many source types including websites, blog posts, books, and journal articles. It is acceptable to use abbreviations in all of these sources.
Adding Heading Levels to your Paper (Windows)
When it comes to school and research assignments however, the Modern Language Association prefers abbreviations to rarely be used. Spelling out abbreviations into their full words and meaning is recommended. This ensures understanding and avoids any confusion.
Instead of coming across choppy abbreviations, readers can follow the natural flow of the language in the paper. There are times when you may feel it is perfectly acceptable to use an abbreviation rather than its typed out counterpart in a paper. When including abbreviations, do not place periods in between capital letters. For lower case abbreviations, it is acceptable to include periods between the letters. If there is a mix of lower case and upper case letters, do not use periods if the majority of the letters are upper case. Type out entire month names when being used in the body of a research paper or assignment.