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Mar 22 2018

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MLA Formatting: General Guidelines

If your instructor asks you to write a paper in MLA style, it means that you are required to make the content look in a particular way. Just as football players dress in a special way, and Italian cooks prepare meals in a special way, writers in different disciplines should follow specific rules.

MLA style formatting is mostly used for papers written in humanities and liberal arts. MLA style indicates certain formatting standards for documents and provides a referencing system for outside sources used in essays. The proper use of MLA style protects authors from being blamed in plagiarism since proper formatting allows them to use materials written by other writers in a legitimate way. Here are some general guidelines for your MLA paper:

  • Your paper should be double-spaced unless your tutor requires single-spacing.
  • Use Times New Roman font. The recommended size is 12 pt.
  • The margins for your paper should be 1 inch on all sides.
  • Numbers of pages should be in the upper right-hand corner.
  • Do not include a Title Page, unless your instructor asks you to.
  • If you include the titles of books, articles, poems, etc. – use italics to emphasize them.
  • The used sources should be included in your Works Cited Page in the alphabetical order.

These are the basic explanations for formatting paper in MLA style. To get more information, you should use MLA Handbooks for Writers or contact our experts for help.

APA paper formatting: general rules

It is no wonder that your English tutor asks you to cite your sources in one way, and your History tutor wants you to format your paper differently. As it has been said, different styles are used for documents in different disciplines. As for instance, APA style formatting is commonly used for papers in social sciences like Psychology, Sociology, History, Anthropology, Education, etc.

Style of academic formatting APA is one of the formats used for papers, essays, publications and even books. Established by the American Psychological Association, today it is used by experts in many sciences. APA style is also widely used for college and university papers.

  • As well as MLA, APA papers are also double-spaced with 1-inch margins on each side.
  • APA guidelines recommend you to use readable and clear font, such as Times New Roman, 12 pt.
  • The main distinction of APA style is a “running head” at the top of each page. To create this header, type the “TITLE OF PAPER” (yes, using caps lock) in the flush the left side of the page. The page numbers should be on the right side. In case if your paper has a long title (more than 50 characters with spacing) use a short version for the running head.
  • The main sections of your paper should be the following: Title Page, Paper Abstract, The Essay Content (introduction, body, conclusion) and References.

To get more information, please consult the Manual of the American Psychological Association or contact our editing team for formatting service.

Basics of Chicago formatting

Chicago style formatting is widely used for academic papers, publications, and other documents. There are two Chicago formatting style types: Author-Date System, which is used for social and other sciences and Notes-Bibliography System, which is mostly used for arts, literature, and history.

The Note-Bibliography system is commonly used for humanities and includes a set of referencing rules for foot-note and end-note citations in the documents and bibliography pages. The key aspect of Note-Bibliography system is that allows the author to comment the used sources, and that is why it is mostly used for such disciplines as arts and history.

As for the Author-Date System, it is similar to MLA formatting style and more commonly used for college and university essays, especially in English composition assignments. This system uses in-text quotations inserted in the essay paragraphs. A few words about notes:

  • End-notes and footnotes are included whenever the outside sources are used, whether it is a paraphrasing or a direct quote. Footnotes should be added at the end of the page where an outside source is used. End-notes should be included at the end of the paper.
  • The information about the source should be included in the first note when this source is used for the first time. You should include author’s name, source name and the publication information. Citing this source once more, you need to include only the author’s name, page number and a source title.
  • Footnotes and end-notes should begin with a counting number.

Consult The Chicago Manual of Style for more detailed information, or contact us for professional formatting help.

Professional document formatting service

If you have been assigned to compose a paper in a specific formatting style and you are puzzled with all the guidelines and manuals, just contact our editing service for assistance. Our editors are proficient in all commonly used styles, like:

  • MLA formatting
  • APA formatting
  • Chicago formatting
  • Harvard formatting
  • Turabian formatting

We will gladly make your paper shine! So do not hesitate to place your order with us at any time!

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