How Do I Write a Paper in MLA Format: Prompts for the Students

When making an argument a person, audience or reader will likely have questions or points to make as they read. Your goal, as the writer, is present your stance on a subject while providing reputable explanations and data to quench your readers’ curiosities. When using this information from outside sources to support your paper, it is also important that you give credit where credit is due. The authors or creators of any source you use will be cited in MLA format. Some great pointers for writing papers in MLA format include: appearance and citations.

  • Appearance
  • When writing a paper and using MLA format for citations, it is crucial to consult a guide on how to arrange the format and style of your MLA paper. When looking to the appearance of your paper, the headers, margins, spacing, page number and more all have certain formats by MLA. Your paper will be on standard sized paper, with you name, teacher’s name, subject and date in the left hand corner. Your paper’s margins will only be one inch, and your spacing is double-spaced. Each top right corner of a page will have your last name, a space and that page number. All of these formatting nuisances are MLA formatting. Consult a guide online or at your library for all of the specifics on MLA appearance.

  • Citations
  • With MLA citations, you will be using in-text citations. These in-text citations are placed after any information presented that is not your own thought. When writing a paper, you will make a point and back it up with research. Following this research, but before the period of the sentence, you will include a parenthesis, author’s last name, page number of source, close with another parenthesis, and then the sentence’s period. This citation lets the reader know where your information came from, in MLA format. Part of the citation process is also the works cited, this is a simple list of all your sources used, following your paper. Look to your nearest MLA guide for more specifics on the citations and works cited.

By keeping these aspects of your research paper in mind, you will not only have a well researched paper, but you will also have a paper captivating to your readers with its rich informational content. When writing a paper, dive into your research for the best scholarly information on the topic. Following your research, begin writing and consider the paper’s appearance and citations. This thoughtful process will result in the most well rounded paper.


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