Use a readable font and double-space your paper's content (e.g., Times New Roman). MLA suggests that the regular and italic type styles contrast enough so that they are distinct from one another. The font should be 12 pt in size. These are the only requirements of MLA style, so any font you choose can be used provided it is clear what text is being reproduced under the guidelines above.
Here are some examples of fonts that can be used: Arial, Calibri, Courier, Helvetica, Impact, Times New Roman, Verdana.
Remember to always follow grammar rules and spelling conventions when writing papers in academic settings. This includes using proper sentence structure, avoiding vague language, and providing proofreading materials for your peers.
MLA Style Guidelines in General: Print your document on regular white 8.5 x 11-inch paper after typing it on a computer. Whatever font you use, MLA suggests that the normal and italic type styles differ sufficiently to distinguish one from the other. A 2-pointed star or asterisk can be used instead of "bold" if you prefer.
In addition to the guidelines mentioned above, these are some general suggestions for formatting manuscripts in MLA style: Use footnotes rather than endnotes. Put all footnotes at the bottom of the page on which they appear. Make sure that they are placed so that they do not interfere with the placement of figures or tables. Type the full title of a book or article in quotation marks even if you are using only its first paragraph. In general, quotations within the text of your essay should be identified either by including them in quotes (or apostrophes) or by using the In-text Citation method.
To create a bibliography or list of sources, follow this standard procedure: Start with an empty line below the last line of the text. Indent the new line two spaces. Now, start entering names of books, articles, interviews, etc. in alphabetic order. Use any style of punctuation to separate items in the list. Separate multiple titles into different lines by adding a comma between each one.
Papers written in accordance with MLA rules should have the following elements: Use a clear typeface, such as Times New Roman or Courier 12-point, and double-space all of the text in your document. Use one-inch margins all around, and indent the beginning line of a paragraph one half-inch from the left margin. Include page numbers at the end of each page.
In addition to these requirements, journals may ask you to follow specific guidelines with regard to fonts and formatting. For example, many require that papers be formatted using Microsoft Word and include only certain fonts on their pages. Others may limit the amount of color used in your paper (usually within specified ranges). Still others may want you to use single-column instead of two-column format, or they may prefer you use their printed paper size rather than the A4 paper used by most academic publishers.
Your instructor will specify any additional rules regarding fonts and formatting that apply to this assignment. For example, some instructors may want you to use computer-generated fonts in your paper, while others may not. Some instructors may allow you to submit your work in PDF form, while others may not. There are many factors beyond our control when it comes to writing assignments, so do what your instructor tells you to do, but read all of his or her instructions before you begin working on your paper.
Finally, be sure to follow all conventions used by your peers in similar projects.
MLA Paper Formatting Fundamentals
How to Write a Research Paper
|Font||12-pt. easily readable (e.g., Times Roman)|
|Spacing||Double-spaced throughout, including captions and bibliography|
|Alignment of Text||Flush left (with an uneven right margin)|
|Paragraph Indentation||1/2″ (or five spaces)|
MLA Format in Google Docs
MLA suggests adopting the 12-point Times New Roman font or another legible typeface (e.g., serif). Use of non-standard fonts or typefaces may cause readers to question the validity of the work.
The modern language association recommends using 12 points for single-spaced pages or 14 points for double-spaced pages. However, some publishers may require a different amount of space between words. Therefore, please check with your publisher on how much space they need between sentences and paragraphs.
Here are some examples of correct and incorrect use of punctuation:
Correct: "MLA recommends that students use MLA guidelines when writing their papers." Incorrect: "MLA recommends that students write their papers according to MLA guidelines."
Correct: "The modern language association (MLA) recommends that students use MLA guidelines when writing their papers."
Correct: "MLA has determined that..." Incorrect: ".. MLA has determined that."
Correct: "According to MLA,..." Incorrect: "MLA says that..."
Cover Page in MLA Format