1 Vuktilar

Mla Format Research Paper Example 2011 Chevrolet

MLA General Format


MLA (Modern Language Association) style is most commonly used to write papers and cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities. This resource, updated to reflect the MLA Handbook (8th ed.), offers examples for the general format of MLA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the Works Cited page.

Contributors: Tony Russell, Allen Brizee, Elizabeth Angeli, Russell Keck, Joshua M. Paiz, Michelle Campbell, Rodrigo Rodríguez-Fuentes, Daniel P. Kenzie, Susan Wegener, Maryam Ghafoor, Purdue OWL Staff
Last Edited: 2016-08-11 04:27:59

MLA style specifies guidelines for formatting manuscripts and using the English language in writing. MLA style also provides writers with a system for referencing their sources through parenthetical citation in their essays and Works Cited pages.

Writers who properly use MLA also build their credibility by demonstrating accountability to their source material. Most importantly, the use of MLA style can protect writers from accusations of plagiarism, which is the purposeful or accidental uncredited use of source material by other writers.

If you are asked to use MLA format, be sure to consult the MLA Handbook (8th edition). Publishing scholars and graduate students should also consult the MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing (3rd edition). The MLA Handbook is available in most writing centers and reference libraries; it is also widely available in bookstores, libraries, and at the MLA web site. See the Additional Resources section of this handout for a list of helpful books and sites about using MLA style.

Paper Format

The preparation of papers and manuscripts in MLA style is covered in chapter four of the MLA Handbook, and chapter four of the MLA Style Manual. Below are some basic guidelines for formatting a paper in MLA style.

General Guidelines

  • Type your paper on a computer and print it out on standard, white 8.5 x 11-inch paper.
  • Double-space the text of your paper, and use a legible font (e.g. Times New Roman). Whatever font you choose, MLA recommends that the regular and italics type styles contrast enough that they are recognizable one from another. The font size should be 12 pt.
  • Leave only one space after periods or other punctuation marks (unless otherwise instructed by your instructor).
  • Set the margins of your document to 1 inch on all sides.
  • Indent the first line of paragraphs one half-inch from the left margin. MLA recommends that you use the Tab key as opposed to pushing the Space Bar five times.
  • Create a header that numbers all pages consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. (Note: Your instructor may ask that you omit the number on your first page. Always follow your instructor's guidelines.)
  • Use italics throughout your essay for the titles of longer works and, only when absolutely necessary, providing emphasis.
  • If you have any endnotes, include them on a separate page before your Works Cited page. Entitle the section Notes (centered, unformatted).

Formatting the First Page of Your Paper

  • Do not make a title page for your paper unless specifically requested.
  • In the upper left-hand corner of the first page, list your name, your instructor's name, the course, and the date. Again, be sure to use double-spaced text.
  • Double space again and center the title. Do not underline, italicize, or place your title in quotation marks; write the title in Title Case (standard capitalization), not in all capital letters.
  • Use quotation marks and/or italics when referring to other works in your title, just as you would in your text: Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas as Morality Play; Human Weariness in "After Apple Picking"
  • Double space between the title and the first line of the text.
  • Create a header in the upper right-hand corner that includes your last name, followed by a space with a page number; number all pages consecutively with Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, etc.), one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. (Note: Your instructor or other readers may ask that you omit last name/page number header on your first page. Always follow instructor guidelines.)

Here is a sample of the first page of a paper in MLA style:

Image Caption: The First Page of an MLA Paper

Section Headings

Writers sometimes use Section Headings to improve a document’s readability. These sections may include individual chapters or other named parts of a book or essay.


MLA recommends that when you divide an essay into sections that you number those sections with an arabic number and a period followed by a space and the section name.

1. Early Writings

2. The London Years

3. Traveling the Continent

4. Final Years


MLA does not have a prescribed system of headings for books (for more information on headings, please see page 146 in the MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing, 3rd edition). If you are only using one level of headings, meaning that all of the sections are distinct and parallel and have no additional sections that fit within them, MLA recommends that these sections resemble one another grammatically. For instance, if your headings are typically short phrases, make all of the headings short phrases (and not, for example, full sentences). Otherwise, the formatting is up to you. It should, however, be consistent throughout the document.

If you employ multiple levels of headings (some of your sections have sections within sections), you may want to provide a key of your chosen level headings and their formatting to your instructor or editor.

Sample Section Headings

The following sample headings are meant to be used only as a reference. You may employ whatever system of formatting that works best for you so long as it remains consistent throughout the document.


1. Soil Conservation

1.1 Erosion

1.2 Terracing

2. Water Conservation

3. Energy Conservation

Formatted, unnumbered:

Level 1 Heading: bold, flush left

Level 2 Heading: italics, flush left

     Level 3 Heading: centered, bold

     Level 4 Heading: centered, italics

Level 5 Heading: underlined, flush left

Sample Bibliography or List of Works Cited
in MLA Style 7th Edition

To: Sample Bibliography or Works Cited in MLA Style 6th ed.
Translate this page to another language of your choice:

To translate a block of text or web page, click Bing Translate or Google Translate

Links to related pages:
1. How to Format a Research Paper in MLA Style, 7th ed
2. How to Format a Research Paper in MLA Style, 6th ed
3. Quoting Passages Using MLA Style, 7th ed.
4. Quoting Passages Using MLA Style, 6th ed.
5. Content Notes and Bibliographic Notes in MLA Style, 7th ed
6. How to Write Footnotes and Endnotes in MLA Style, 6th ed.
7. Footnotes and Endnotes - Examples in MLA Style, 6th ed.
8. Footnotes in MLA Style, 6th ed. - Sample Page
9. Endnotes in MLA Style, 6th ed. - Sample Page
10. How to Write Parenthetical Documentation in MLA Style, 7th ed.
11. How to Write Parenthetical Documentation in MLA Style, 6th ed.
12. Parenthetical Documentation in MLA Style, 7th ed. Sample Page
13. Parenthetical Documentation in MLA Style, 6th ed. Sample Page
14. Works Cited, References, and Bibliography: What's the Difference? MLA Style, 7th ed.
15. Works Cited, References, and Bibliography: What's the Difference? MLA Style, 6th ed.
16. Guidelines on Writing a Bibliography or Works Cited Page in MLA Style, 7th ed
17. Guidelines on Writing a Bibliography or Works Cited Page in MLA Style, 6th ed.
18. How to Write a Bibliography or Works Cited Page - Examples in MLA Style, 7th ed.
19. How to Write a Bibliography or Works Cited Page - Examples in MLA Style, 6th ed.
20. Works Cited in MLA Style, 7th ed. - Sample Page
21. Works Cited in MLA Style, 6th ed. - Sample Page
22. Research, Writing, and Style Guides (MLA, APA, Chicago/Turabian, Harvard, CGOS, CBE)

Works Cited, References, or Bibliography Sample Page

● Remember to double-space all entries, indent second and subsequent alines. (Note: Entries may not appear indented here).
● List all entries alphabetically by first word of the work cited, ignoring articles: a, an, the.
● Insert consecutive page number for your paper in the upper right-hand corner, half an inch from the top.
● Put the list of Works Cited, References or Bibliography at the end of your research paper.

Jones 22

Works Cited

"50 Top Sites for Web Designers." Website Magazine  May 2011: 16. Print.

Note: The following Internet citation is the same article published on the Web by WebsiteMagazine.com  posted on March 30, 2011. The print edition of this issue Website Magazine  was dated May 2011.

"50 Top Sites for Web Designers." WebsiteMagazine.com   30 Mar. 2011. Web. 26 Apr. 2011.

2012 Andex Chart. Windsor, ON: Andex Associates, 2012. Print.

2010 Chevy Camaro SS. Video. Advertisement. Inside Line.  Edmunds, 2009. Web. 15 July 2009.

Angus, Angela E. "Face Coverings Un-Canadian." Letter. National Post  [Toronto] 4 Apr. 2015: A15. Print.

Ashoona, Kiawak. Smiling Family. 1966. Sculpture. McMichael Canadian Art Collection Kleinburg, ON.

Bausch & Lomb. Advertisement. Modern Medicine.  Opthalmology Times, 2009. Web. 15 July 2009.

Becatoros, Elena. "Greece's Tsipras: From Bailout Rebel to Enforcer." Epoch Times  [Toronto] 24-30 Sept. 2015: A5. Print.

"Beginner Tip: Presenting Your Page with Style." Webmaster Tips Newsletter. NetMechanic, July 2000. Web. 12 June 2009.

Note the following two ways of citing a work with three or more authors. You must be consistent by using either one or the other style but not both in the same research paper. Either you use "et al." or you do not. If you do not use "et al." for a work with three or more authors, you must list names of all the authors in your list of Works Cited.

Bowers, Ray, et al. Biology 11. Toronto: Wesley, 2002. Print.

Bowers, Ray, Dean Eichorn, Len Silverman, Gail de Souza, Rob Young, and Robert Hedges. Biology 11. Toronto: Wesley, 2002. Print.

Cardona, Claire Z. "Warrant Issued for Teen with 'Affluenza'." Toronto Star  17 Dec. 2015: A22. Print.

Continelli, Louise. "A Place for Owls to Heal." Buffalo News  12 Jan. 2003: C2. Print.

Csanady, Ashley. "China Changes Embryo's Genes." National Post  [Toronto] 7 Apr. 2015: A9. Print.

Day, Anne. "From Muffins to Millions: Meet Nadja Piatka." Company  Summer 2010: 7-8. Print.

"E-Money Slips Quietly into Oblivion." Nikkei Weekly [Tokyo]  22 Jan. 2001: 4. Print.

"Fake Soldier Sentenced." Toronto Star  5 Aug. 2015: A2. Print.

GEICO. Advertisement. Newsweek  16 Jan. 2006: 92. Print.

Gibaldi, Joseph. MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers.  6th ed. New York: MLA, 2003. Print.

"Gloria Steinem." Power Quotes. Wisdom Quotes by Jone Johnson Lewis, 1995-2009. Web. 15 Nov. 2009.

Gordin, Michael D. "The Science of Vodka." Letter. New Yorker  13 Jan. 2003: 7. Print.

The Great Wall of China, Beijing, China. Personal photograph by B. Davenport. 4 June 2016.

Gurman, Mark, Alex Webb, and Ian King. "Apple Sets Sights on Smart Glasses." Toronto Star  16 Nov. 2016: B1. Print.

Healy, Michelle. "Report Says Over-Fortified Cereals May Hurt Children." USA Today  24 June 2014: 6A. Print.

"Ho Chi Minh."  Encyclopaedia Britannica Online. Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2008. Web. 28 Apr. 2008.

Hyundai. Advertisement. Toronto Star  19 Feb. 2015: M5. Print.

Into the Woods. Screenplay by James Lapine. Dir. Rob Marshall. Perf. Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden,
        Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, and Johnny Depp. Disney, 2014. Film.

"ISIS Price List for Slaves Verified." Toronto Star  5 Aug. 2015: A4. Print.

Jacobs, Andrew. "China Cracks Down on Feminist Activists." National Post  [Toronto] 8 Apr. 2015: A8. Print.

Johnson, Hal, and Joanne McLeod. "Breathe! It's Free Health Care." Active Life  July-Aug. 2014: 45. Print.

Kesterton, Michael. "Tracking Shoppers' Eyeballs." Globe and Mail  [Toronto] 2 May 2013: L8. Print.

Kesteven, George. "The $25-Billion Hammer." National Post  [Toronto] 4 Nov. 2006: FP15. Print.

King, Stephen. Black House. New York: Random, 2001. Print.

---. From a Buick 8: A Novel. New York: Simon, 2002. Print.

Law and Order. Prod. Wolf Film in assoc. with Universal Television. NBC Television Network. WHEC, Rochester, NY. 13 Mar. 2003. Television.

"Li Chao Named National Coach." Table Tennis News. In the Winning Zone, Jan. 2009. Web. 26 June 2009.

Little, Matthew. "Robot Economics" Epoch Times  [Toronto] 19-25 Feb. 2015: A1+. Print.

Online version of above article, Ottawa instead of Toronto edition:

Little, Matthew. "Robot Economics." 20-26 Feb. 2015. Epoch Times  [Ottawa] Web. 24 Feb. 2015.

Longin, Hellmut. Telephone interview. 28 July 2014.

Malloy, Gerry. "Apple or Google Roadsters in 2025?" Toronto Star  19 Feb. 2015: M4. Print.

Marshall, Leon. "Nelson Mandela Bows Out of Public Life." National Geographic News.  National Geographic, 2 June 2004. Web. 16 July 2009.

Microsoft PowerPoint Version 2002 Step by Step. Redmond, WA: Microsoft, 2001. CD-ROM.

Mitchell, Joni. Both Sides Now. Reprise Records, Time Warner. Dist. Warner Music Canada, Scarborough, ON, 2000. CD.

MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers.  7th ed. New York: MLA, 2009. Print.

Mona Lisa. Poster. Advertisement. Poster.com.  Posters By Mail, 1994-2009. Web. 15 July 2009.

"Mug." Def. 2. The New Lexicon Webster's Encyclopedic Dictionary of the English Language. Canadian ed. 1988. Print.

NASONEX Nasal Spray, Schering. Advertisement. Newsweek  9 Sept. 2002: 9. Print.

"Nazi Party". New Encyclopaedia Britannica. 1997 ed. Print.

The Nutcracker. By Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Chor. and Libretto by James Kudelka. Cond. Ormsby Wilkins and Uri Mayer. National Ballet of Canada. Hummingbird Centre, Toronto. 30 Dec. 1999. Performance.

O'Keefe, Mark. "Definition of 'Rich' Is Elusive." Detroit Free Press  12 Jan. 2003: 1E+. Print.

Ortutay, Barbara. "Microsoft to Acquire LinkedIn for $26.2B." Toronto Star  14 June 2016: S9. Print.

Penny, Nicholas B. "Sculpture, The History of Western." New Encyclopaedia Britannica. 1998 ed. Print.

Phillips, Stephen, et al. Primavera: Poems by Four Authors. Project Gutenberg, 4 Sept. 2006. Web. 26 June 2009.

PicoSearch. "Your PicoSearch Account is Reindexed." Message to I. Lee. 20 May 2013. E-mail.

Pulda, Arnold. "Handling Hate Sites." Classroom Connect Newsletter  May 2003: 18-19. Print.

Rai, Arti K., and Rebecca S. Eisenberg. "Bayh-Dole Reform and the Progress of Biomedicine." American Scientist  Jan.-Feb. 2003: 52-59. Print.

RAMeSize. Vers. 1.1. Blue Dice Software.  PCWorld, 5 Dec. 2002. Web. 16 July 2009.

Schubach, Erik. "Bugs Bunny." Cartoon. Cartoon World!  1998. Web. 2 Oct. 2004.

Shakespeare, William. Taming of the Shrew. Ed. John Crowther. New York: Spark, 2004. Print.

---. Taming of the Shrew. Ed. Roma Gill. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1990. Print.

Sony Cyber-shot Accessories. N.p.: Sony Canada, 2007. Print.

The Sound of Music. Music by Richard Rodgers. Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Dir. Jeremy Sams.
        Prod. Andrew Lloyd Webber, David Ian, and David Mirvish. Based on book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse.
        Chor. Arlene Phillips. Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto. 5 Sept. 2009. Performance.

Svitil, Kathy A. "Can I Pour You a Pint of Light?" Discover  Nov. 2002: 12. Print.

---. "The 50 Most Important Women in Science." Discover  Nov. 2002: 52-57. Print.

Thackston, Karon. "Seven Steps to Writing Enticing Product Descriptions." Website  Aug. 2010: 41-42. Print.

"Thanks a Bunch!" Electronic card. Blue Mountain Arts. Kersten Brothers Studios, 2000. Web. 16 May 2004.

Thomas, Cathy Booth, and Tim Padgett. "Life among the Ruins." Time  19 Sept. 2005: 28+. Print.

Thomason, Larisa. "HTML Tip: The Renewed Importance of META Tags." Webmaster Tips Newsletter.  NetMechanic, Feb. 2006. Web. 8 May 2009.

Toyota. Advertisement. Atlantic Monthly  Jan.-Feb. 2005: 27-30. Print.

Note: "The Tuxedo" is listed alphabetically by title after "Toyota" under "Tuxedo", ignoring the article "The". This would also apply to foreign language articles, such as "Le Soleil" which would be listed under "Soleil" ignoring the article "Le".

The Tuxedo. Dir. Kevin Donovan. Prod. John H. Williams and Adam Schroeder. Perf. Jackie Chan and Jennifer Love Hewitt. DreamWorks, 2002. Film.

"Ukrainian Insurgents Agree to Respect Cease-Fire." USA Today  24 June 2014: 2A. Print.

Wolanski, Eric, et al. "Mud, Marine Snow and Coral Reefs." American Scientist  Jan.-Feb. 2003: 44-51. Print.

"Writing a Bibliography: MLA Style." Honolulu Community College Library.  U of  Hawaii, 28 Apr. 2006. Web. 21 June 2009.


Leave a Comment


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *