How To Do A Term Paper In The MLA Format: 8 Effective Suggestions

When you are tasked with writing a term paper, you might have to write in MLA. MLA is the format that was provided by the Modern Language Association. It is one of the most common methods of citing that you will come across during the course of your academic career, especially for the liberal arts and humanities classes. There is a handbook which you can review which includes all information pertaining to citing sources in a works cited page, citing sources in your essay, writing footnotes and endnotes, and properly formatting your final paper. Below are eight tips you can apply to any MLA style paper you are writing:

  1. 1. Your paper needs to have an introduction
  2. 2. Your paper needs to have a body
  3. 3. Your paper needs to have a conclusion
  4. 4. Your paper needs to have a works cited page
  5. 5.When you cite sources, you will have to use the parenthetical citation which involves placing only the three key relevant pieces of information inside of parentheses. In almost all cases, though it might vary based on the source you are using, you will need to have the following information inside of the parenthesis:
  6. last name of the author

    the page number you are citing

    the date that the content was published

  7. 6. The way that you cite a work inside of your paper needs to match the way that the citation appears on your works cited page which is your bibliography at the end of your research paper.
  8. 7. For the first page, you need to have your heading which should include:
  9. your name

    your course name

    your teacher’s name or academic institution

    the date

  10. 8. Your heading information should be listed in the upper left hand side of the first page with the page number and your last name listed on the opposite right hand side, flush with the one inch margins.
  11. The next line should have the title of your paper.

    All of your content should be:

    double spaced

    Times New Roman font

    size 12


There are different requirements for the citing of sources with MLA style contingent upon the type of source that it is and the number of authors on that source. That being said, it is your responsibility as the student to refer to the MLA handbook to make sure that you properly format and cite your sources.