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Formatting Papers

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Formatting Your Research Paper

The formatting of a research paper will depend on which format and style guide you are required to use for your class.  Always verify with your professor which style (APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.) is used in that individual class.

The following are standard conventions to keep in mind when preparing your research paper:

  • Use only good quality white paper (8 ½ X 11 inches).
  • Use 1 inch margins all around.
  • Double space throughout the paper including quotations.

-For APA and MLA double space everything including notes, and lists of Works Cited (MLA) or References (APA).

-For Chicago/Turabian double space between bibliography entries but single space within the contents of each bibliographical entry.

  • Use an easy, readable font, black in color and in a large but not too large size. (Times Roman, font point size 12 is recommended)
  • Use page numbers in the upper right-hand corner.
  • Indent the first line of each paragraph.
  • Citation Lists
  • Begin lists of Works Cited (MLA), References (APA) and Bibliography (Chicago) on a new page.
  • Center the heading.
  • Alphabetize entries by the author’s last name.
  • Each entry for MLA and APA should begin with a hanging indent.

Helpful Formatting Links

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