Guidelines on how to use the MLA format for writing essays

MLA is short for ‘Modern Language Association’ style which is the most universally used style to write essays and mention sources. It includes in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, etc. MLA style states the guidelines for formatting manuscripts and the use of proper and correct English communication in written. MLA style offers writers with a method to provide for the readers to refer back to the original sources that exist in the essays.

MLA style adds onto the credibility of the writers as it exhibits their liability to the source matters. Most vitally, the usage of MLA style can protect writers from allegations of breach of copyright charged on them by the source material of the other writers.

General Guidelines on how to use the MLA format while writing essays:

Before you type your essay on a computer and publish it out on a standard A4 size plain paper. You have to-

Double space the content of your essay, and make use a clear font, for e.g., Times New Roman. Whatever be the font that you have chosen, according to the MLA format, it is recommended that the use of the ‘regular’ and ‘italics’ type styles are able to contrast from each other. The font size has to be at least be 12 pt. Ensure that only one space is left after periods or other quotation marks.

The margins of the essay should be 1 inch on all sides throughout the pages.

Indent the beginning of each paragraph one half inch from the left margin. It is suggested that you use the Tab key once rather than hitting the space-bar for a few times. A footer that numbers all the pages of your essay is to be created in the upper right side, one half inch from the top of the right margin. This makes it easy for the readers to skip to a particular page in the middle or the end of the essay.

Use italics throughout your essay to provide emphasis on certain words, titles or quotes.

You may use ‘subdivisions’ to improvise on the essay’s readability. These divisions include names of the individual chapters or other parts of the essay.

If you have any remarks to be made, include them on a different page in the end. Name that section as ‘Notes’.

Format for the First Page of Your Essay:
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First of all, in the upper left side of the first page, list out your name, your teacher’s name, the subject, and the submission date very clearly in ‘bold’.

Create a title for your essay. Centre the title and double-space it and write it in standard capitalization.

When you are referring to other pieces of work in your title, use punctuation marks or italics to help the readers differentiate it from your original work.

Then, add a double space connecting the title and the beginning of your essay. Ensure there are no extra spaces between the headline and the title, or any extra space between the title and the body of the essay.

Always remember, that the content has more impact on the reader than the font. The MLA format will only help the essay look pleasing; the content by itself has to be credible.