What is the MLA format for research papers?

The MLA stands for Modern Language Association style in writing research papers and citing references and sources in the research paper.  The MLA format style is normally used in research papers in humanities classes and liberal arts classes.  MLA format style gives instructions on how to write and format a manuscript.  The MLA format style states the proper use of the English language in research paper writing.  The MLA format style shows writers how to properly cite their sources by using the format of parenthetical citing and creating a page with all cited sources.  The use of the MLA format style for writing a research paper and citing the sources, makes the student look very credible and ensures that the student is not accused of plagiarism.

Here are the guidelines for using MLA style format for one’s research paper:

  • the paper should be typed in Times Roman Font Size 12 on regular sized white paper (8.5 X 11 inch sized paper).
  • the paper should have double spaced text.
  • the space between sentences should only be one space and not the normal two spaces.
  • the margin for the paper should be set one inch on every side.
  • the paragraphs should be indented ½ inch from the left margin of the paper.  With the MLA style format should use the TAB button on the computer to indent the paragraphs.
  • with the MLA style research paper the pages should be numbered by a header on the right side of the paper up in the corner.
  • for cites of work that have long titles one should use italic.
  • if the research paper has endnotes, the endnotes should be included on a separate page after the page titled “Work Cited”.
  • the page with the endnotes should be titled “Notes”.

How to format the first page of the research paper using MLA style format:

  • the first page of the research paper should not be the title page.
  • your name, class information, and date should be in the upper left side corner of the paper.
  • the title should be centered but not underlined or in bold.
  • ensure that all cited work is in italic or quotation marks.
  • always ensure that there is a double space between the first sentence of the paper and the title.

In the right hand corner should number the pages, it will have one’s last name followed by the number of the page.