Research Paper Outline MLA

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Research Paper Outline MLA Writing

MLA is a citation style developed by the Modern Language Association of America. This is the academic style most commonly used in the United States, Canada, and other countries. It is used, above all, by those who need to write a paper or another type of essay. This kind of writing is generally used in the humanities, studies of modern language and literature, literary criticism, studies of culture and media, and other related disciplines. MLA is primarily intended for academics, researchers, professors, students, etc.

How to Format an MLA Research Paper

This writing outline provides guidelines for researchers and writers to shape their documents and other research reports, especially when naming their sources. Citing and referencing is very important, as it protects and keeps your project plagiarism-free. By mentioning them properly, you are demonstrating the reliability of your source texts in the thesis.

Here are some general guidelines to apply if you want to learn how to write a research paper MLA format:

  • Margin. Margins should be 1 “(2.5 cm) at all four ends (top, bottom, left, and right).
  • Font size and type. The font for all text should be 12 pt. Make sure you use a legible typeface and don’t use decorative fonts. It is recommended that the regular typeface and italics of the font type differ well.
  • Spacing. The entire essay must be double-spaced. This includes the title and body of each paragraph. Avoid adding extra spaces between the heading and title of your article, as well as between the title and the body itself. For spacing and punctuation, include a space after the period and other punctuation marks unless your instructor specifies otherwise.
  • Indentation of the text. For body text, indent the first line of each paragraph approximately 1.25 cm from the left margin, which is 5 to 7 spaces. Using the Tab key is recommended for consistency, rather than pressing the space bar 5 to 7 times.
  • Page order and pagination. Place a heading that lists all the pages of your article in the upper right corner of each page, 1.25 cm from the top and aligned to the right. However, this may vary depending on the specifications of your instructor. Sometimes, headings are required to be typed with your last name first, then the number in Arabic numerals instead of Roman numerals. This complies with the MLA essay writing guides. It is recommended that you first check with your instructor to ensure that you adhere to his or her guidelines.
  • Apostille. The apostille should be located on separate pages, preceding the Works Cited. Include the title “Apostille” in this section, centered, and without formatting.

Structure of an MLA paper with Practical Examples

Research Paper Outline MLA Writing

Let’s examine a sample paper in its structural nature. When learning how to write and how to format academic papers or research papers or another project or essay that requires a good MLA outline template, it is important to stay within a defined structure. Certain aspects are inevitable outlining either the statement or other sections of your writing project.


When authoring articles with the MLA writing format, keep in mind that the Cover is not required unless requested by your instructor. In this case, the Cover will be the first one. You must include your name, the name of your instructor, the course, and the date in the upper left corner. Make sure to double space after each line. After the date, double-space again for the title of your article, aligned in the center. Please do nothing on the Title further, for example by underlining it, using italics, all capital letters, or in quotation marks.

Section headers

To write a long research article in the MLA writing outline, it is best to use Section Headings, as these may improve the readability of your article. Section Headings can be individual chapters of a book or identified parts of an essay.

There are two (2) kinds of headings you can use: enumerated headings and formatted headings without enumeration. Whatever you choose, be sure to use this type of cut for the entire article including each sentence in the project. Below, you can show the thesis statement and argumentative essay topics.


Once you’ve finished with the cover and section headings, we move on to the body of the essay. All general MLA outline template guidelines apply to the body of your essay. Between paragraphs, refrain from adding extra spaces, as this is only done when you are expected to write in a business format. Otherwise, be consistent and keep up with the general guidelines throughout the essay.

Quotes from the essay

When writing a thesis or working on an essay, it is essential to properly document your sources with explanatory references not only to demonstrate the credibility of your article. Moreover, for all other papers including a good college application essay, it also to avoid being accused of plagiarism. If such a thing happens, it can cause you a lot of problems and can even lead to a poor grade.

Here are some explanatory reference guidelines for articles that keep up with the MLA writing format:

  • When you reference external resources according to the MLA writing format, include a Works Cited to show readers where you found your data and information. This will also allow you to easily find the source texts mentioned in a sentence of your essay or thesis.
  • Remember that the Works Cited is not the same as the Bibliography or a list of all the records that you have researched in the preparation and writing of your article.
  • Format your Works Cited by creating a header. The entire page must be double-spaced, like the rest of the document, including citations.

List the citations alphabetically by the authors’ last names.

MLA Outline Example

Research Paper Outline MLA Writing

The MLA form uses a simple form of both citing references in the text and in the list of references at the end of the text.

Citing the source in the text briefly identifies the source of the citation, ie information:

  • the author’s last name and the pages from which the data were taken are noted in parentheses immediately after the data is provided, for example: “In Italian linguistics, there is a tendency…” (Bertollini 25)
  • the material in brackets should supplement the information, not repeat it, for example: “Bertolini considers that in Italian linguistics…” (25)
  • if we use several works by the same author, then next to the name we state the year of publication, for example:
    • It is considered that in Italian linguistics …” (Bertolini 1997, 25),
    • Bertolini considers that in Italian linguistics” (1997, 25),
    • As Bertolini concludes in Linguistic Questions, Italian Linguistics” (156).
  • if the information is located in two locations: (Bertolini 125-126, 318)
  • if it is important to state that: (Bertolini 3: 114)
  • if the authorship belongs to a corporation: (Constitution of Montenegro, 14-15)
  • if there is no author, we state the abbreviated title of the text that begins with the first word that the text is cited in “Literature”: (Report… 12)
  • The reference in parentheses is given
    • in front of a punctuation mark that ends a sentence, for example: “There is a tendency in Italian linguistics” (Bertollini 25). That is: As Bertolini concludes, “in contemporary Italian linguistics…” (25)
    • after the punctuation mark that ends the quote is written as a separate paragraph.

Bibliography at the end of the paper:

  • lists complete bibliographic references in alphabetical order
  • the name of the publisher is shortened by omitting members, business abbreviations (Co., Inc.) or descriptive parts (Press, Publisher),
  • if more than one publisher is present, list them all and separate them with a semicolon,
  • if a larger number of locations is specified for one publisher, only the first from the paper is stated,
  • use the conjunction “i”, not the sign “&”, if the authorship is several authors.

The Most Common Types of Essays and Outlines

Throughout your education, college essay writing and different kinds of thesis writing assignments will follow your work. Here are some of the most frequently ordered essays that college students can come upon, depending on their specific field of study:

Essay OutlineEssay Topic TypesNarrativeStructure and Structural Parts
MLADescriptive EssayPersuasiveEssay Introduction
Chicago StylePersuasive Essay TopicsPersonalThe Main Idea or the Thesis Statement
APA StyleAnalytical EssayThe Full Body of the Essay
Expository EssayConclusion of the Thesis
Definition EssayLiterature Review
Reflective Essay
Narrative Essay
Contrast Essay Topics
Effect Essay Topics

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