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Tips for Students: MLA Format. Compiled and Written by Jessica Reyes, Business Management Faculty Valerie Peyer, English Faculty. Common Types of Collegiate Research Papers. Modern Language Association referred to as MLA Style http ://

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tips for students mla format

Tips for Students: MLA Format

Compiled and Written by

Jessica Reyes, Business Management Faculty

Valerie Peyer, English Faculty

common types of collegiate research papers
Common Types of Collegiate Research Papers
  • Modern Language Association referred to as MLA Style

  • American Psychological Association referred to as APA Style

disciplines according to style
Disciplines According to Style

MLA StyleAPA Style

Arts Education

Literature Nursing

Philosophy Psychology Social Sciences

how do you know which format to use
How do you know which format to use?
  • Your instructor will give you specifics in class if a research paper is required.
  • If you are unsure what format style is required, ask your instructor prior to beginning.
  • Your instructor is the best source of information for assistance if you have difficulty in establishing which format to use.
  • Keep in mind, each instructor for your courses may not all use the same format.
  • You may be using different formats in any given semester.
mla format
MLA Format
  • A title page is not required.
  • Use 1” margins top, bottom, left, and right.
  • Double-space paper throughout.
  • Font can be either Arial 12 or Times New Roman 12.
  • Indent paragraphs by pressing the Tab Key one time.
  • Insert a running header on the first page to appear on every page including page one, right aligned.
  • Information for the header will include Last Name and page number (example) Reyes 1. Page numbering will be in running header.
mla format continued
MLA Format (Continued)
  • Title Block on the first page will include:
  • Student’s Name
  • Instructor’s Name
  • Course Name and Number (Example: ENGL 1301)
  • Due Date (Example:

22 May 2012)

  • Center the title of the paper but do not apply bold, italics, underline, or quotation marks.
  • Alignment of your paper will be Left Aligned with the exception of the title, which will be Center Aligned.
title block
Title Block

Jessica Reyes (Student’s Name)

Valerie Peyer (Instructor’s Name)

ENGL 1301 (Course Name and Number)

29 August 20-- (Due Date for research paper)

Note: Title Block is double-spaced as well.

set up margins
Set-Up Margins
  • Open MS Word
  • In the Home Ribbon, on the right side of Paragraph Group, click on down arrow. This will open up Paragraph Dialogue box.
  • Click on Indents and Spacing Tab

In the Indents and Spacing Tab, in the Spacing Section, make sure Before and After are set to 0 pt.

  • Click on Line spacing down arrow and change to Double.
  • This will automatically change the At Box to Blank or empty and then click OK.
set up font type and size tab key
Set-up Font Type and SizeTab Key
  • In the Font Group in the Home Ribbon, click the Font Type down arrow and scroll down until you select either Arial or Times New Roman.
  • In the same Font Group in the Home Ribbon, click the Font Size down arrow and scroll down until you select size 12.
  • Use of Tab Key is marked with either the word TAB or right/left arrow on the left side of the keyboard. Hit the Tab Key only one time to indent your paragraph.
insert a running header
Insert a Running Header
  • From the Home Ribbon, click on the Insert Tab at the top of the screen.
  • In the Header & Footer group, click on the Header function and arrow down and select Blank Header.
  • Once you see the Header section at the top of your paper, a new Tab will appear at the top called Header & Footer Tools. In this Tab, go to the Position group and click on Insert Alignment Tab. A dialogue box will pop up. In the box, select Right and then click OK. Your Header will now be aligned to the Right.
alignment tab
Alignment Tab
  • Click on Right to align your header information.
mla format requires two things
MLA Format Requires Two Things
  • In-text citations in your body paragraphs.
    • Use “quotation marks” to indicate a direct quote.
    • Include the last name of the source’s author and page number in parenthesis when citing a book (Goodman 23).

2. A Works Cited page listing your sources.

    • last page of your essay
what it looks like
What it Looks Like

Jane Kuenz, the author of “The Bluest Eye: Notes on History, Community, and Black Female Subjectivity,” claims,“ The effect of the constant circulation of the faces of . . . Ginger Rogers, Gretta Garbo, Jean Harlow, and . . . Shirley Temple is to reintroduce and exaggerate . . . romantic love and physical beauty, each defined according to what they exclude and each destructive to the extent that they are made definitionally unavailable” (424). For young Pecola, these images gradually convince her into believing she is not good enough.

tip introduce your sources
Tip: Introduce Your Sources

In his latest book, Michael Pollan proposes that we “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants” (1).

  • This student quotes from a book.

A recent online article entitled “What’s Up, Gen Y?” indicates that millennials’ ability to multi-task is actually counterproductive for college students (Jones).

  • This student summarizes an article from a Web site.
link for works cited page example
Link for Works Cited Page Example
how to create hanging indent
How to Create Hanging Indent
  • A hanging indent is used to indent subsequent lines of text should the citation be more than one line long.


Farmers Insurance Group. “New Survey Shows Drivers Have Had

‘Close Calls’ with Cell Phone Users.” Farmers. Farmers

Insurance Group, 8 May 2000. Web. 12 Jan. 2001.

hanging indent
Hanging Indent
  • Open MS Word
  • In the Home Ribbon, in Paragraph Group, click down arrow, right hand side of group
  • Will open Paragraph dialogue box
  • Click on Indents and Spacing Tab
  • In the Indentation Section, click on the down arrow under Special and change to Hanging
  • Click OK
help how do i cite that all styles
Help! How do I Cite That? (All Styles)
  • Knight Cite
  • Temple College Library:
  • What? FREE online help with writing assignments.
  • How? e-Structor reviews and critiques student essays.
  • Where? Your D2L Homepage or TC eLearning page.
  • When? 24 hours a day.
where do i go for help
Where do I go for help?

Temple College Writing Center (TCWC)

ISC Building, Room 108



Semester Office Hours to be determined at the beginning of the term

Temple College Writing Center (Taylor Campus)

EWCHEC, Room 133


Email: or

Semester Office Hours to be determined at the beginning of the term

additional resources
Additional Resources
  • YouTube Video


  • Purdue Online Writing Lab – MLA Formatting and Style Guide

  • MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (7th edition) ISBN: 9781603290241

works cited
Works Cited

ARCLibrary. “MLA Format in Word 2010.” YouTube. 7 Oct. 2011. Web. 21 May 2012.

Pollan, Michael. In Defense of Food. New York: The Penguin Press, 2008. Print.

“Sample MLA Works Cited List (Daly).” Web. 21 May 2012. <>.