MLA Format Basics

The official MLA Website for the current 9th edition can be found here: What follows are guidelines for using this current edition of MLA format.

  • Double-space all lines. Eliminate all extra spacing between paragraphs so that everything is only double-spaced.
    • A common error is leaving extra space before or after paragraph breaks, which is sometimes the default paragraph setting in some word-processing programs.
  • Use a standard font, such as Times New Roman.
  • On the first page only, include the following identifying information in this order in the upper left-hand corner of the page (not in the header).
    • Your name
    • The instructor’s name
    • The course name
    • The date
  • Center the title on the next line down after the identifying information. Capitalize using standard title format, which means to capitalize the first letters of all words except prepositions and conjunctions in-between other words.
  • On every page, include your last name and page number in the header in the upper right.
  • The page margins on all sides should be one inch (1″).
  • Each paragraph should have first-line indentation at one-half inch (0.5″).
  • Use the MLA Citation rules for every source in your essay.


The following is an example MLA format:







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