how to type an essay in mla format using word

how to type an essay in mla format using word

Typing an essay in MLA format using Microsoft Word for a 1000-word essay is relatively straightforward. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to format your essay correctly:

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1. Open Microsoft Word:

  • Launch Microsoft Word on your computer.

2. Set Margins and Page Layout:

  • Go to the “Layout” or “Page Layout” tab (the name may vary depending on your version of Word).
  • Click on “Margins” and select “Normal,” which sets 1-inch margins on all sides.

3. Set Font and Font Size:

  • Choose a legible 12-point font such as Times New Roman or Arial. You can set the font and font size under the “Home” tab.

4. Set Line Spacing:

  • Click on the “Line and Paragraph Spacing” button (usually represented as lines with an up and down arrow) and select “2.0” to achieve double spacing throughout your essay.

5. Set Header:

  • Click on the “Insert” tab.
  • Select “Header” and choose “Blank” or “Edit Header” (the option may vary depending on your version of Word).
  • In the header, type your last name and then press the spacebar. This will create a header with your last name and an automatic page number. Your header should look something like this: “Smith 1” for the first page.

6. Set Title:

  • Place your cursor at the top of the first page.
  • Type your essay title in plain text. Center it on the page and capitalize the major words.

7. Set Paragraph Indentation:

  • Press the “Tab” key once or use the ruler at the top of the page to set a 0.5-inch indentation for the first line of each paragraph. This will create the standard indentation for paragraphs in MLA format.

8. Insert Page Numbers:

  • If your essay is longer than one page, the header you created in step 5 will automatically include page numbers on each subsequent page. You don’t need to manually add page numbers.

9. Format Citations:

  • Use the “References” tab to create citations and a bibliography if needed. Microsoft Word has built-in citation tools that can help you format your citations in MLA style.

10. Save Your Document: – Save your document frequently to avoid losing your work.

11. Proofread and Edit: – Carefully review your essay for spelling, grammar, punctuation errors, and formatting issues. Make sure your essay is well-organized and follows the MLA guidelines.

12. Save and Submit: – After proofreading and editing, save your document one last time. – If you need to submit your essay electronically, save it in a format that’s compatible with your submission platform (e.g., PDF) before uploading it.

By following these steps, you can format your essay in MLA style using Microsoft Word. Remember to replace the placeholder text with your actual essay content, including your name, the title, and the body of the essay.

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