MLA Format

MLA Format

What is MLA style?
MLA style is a set of guidelines that writers in the humanities (such as English) often use to format their writing and cite their sources consistently. Instructors may require you to use MLA style for your assignments. The basic guidelines for formatting your paper in MLA are included below.

Basic Formatting Guidelines*

  • Include one-inch (1”) margins on all sides of the page (top, bottom, left, and right)
  • Use a readable font (e.g., Times New Roman) between 11 and 13 points in size
  • Left justify text
  • Include double-line spacing for all text
  • Include a header in the upper right-hand corner with student’s last name and the page number
  • Include a heading with student’s first and last name, professor’s name, class, and date
  • Center the title and capitalize the first word, the last word, and all other major words (e.g., Chasing the Dream: How to Succeed in College)
  • Indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch (0.5”) by hitting the Tab key

Note: Individual instructor’s specifications may vary, so check with your instructor before formatting and submitting your work. For additional help setting up your document in MLA format, refer to The MLA Style Center, Information is based on the 9th edition of the MLA Handbook, sections 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, and 1.4.

Page last updated July 25, 2023.