MLA Format: The Basics of Formatting an Essay

Here are some Basics of Formatting an Essay in MLA style

Step 1: Margins
Use 1” Margins on all sides of the document


Step 2: Header
Insert Your Last Name and Page Number in the Upper Right Corner
● Double click in the header space at the top of the document
● Use Right Alignment
● Type your last name, followed by one space
● Then click “Page Number”
● Select “Current Position”
Step 3: Heading
In the top left corner of the document, type the following
● Your Name
● Professor Name
● Course Number
● Date (day month year)


Step 4: Title
Give your essay a title.
● After the date, press Return
● Center
● Type the title
● Press Return
(This is the 1st line of the essay. Tab for new paragraphs.)


Step 5: Font
Unless otherwise instructed, use Times New Roman, 12pt Font


Step 6: Header Font
Be sure the header font matches the essay font.


Step 7: Spacing
The essay should be doublespaced throughout with no extra spacing between paragraphs. This may require you to use the “No Spacing Style” in MS Word. Then choose 2.0 for spacing.


Step 8: Preview
Preview before you print.