MLA (Modern Language Association) style is commonly used for formatting research papers in the humanities, such as literature, language, and cultural studies. Here are the main guidelines for formatting a paper in MLA style:

  1. Margins: Set one-inch margins on all sides of the document.
  2. Font: Use a legible font such as Times New Roman, size 12.
  3. Line spacing: Use double-spacing throughout the document, including the title page, references, and quotations.
  4. Title page: Include a title page with your name, the instructor’s name, the course title, and the date.
  5. Header: Create a header with your last name and the page number in the upper right-hand corner of each page.
  6. In-text citations: Use parenthetical citations to indicate the source of a quotation or paraphrase. The citation should include the author’s last name and the page number(s) of the source.
  7. Works Cited page: Include a Works Cited page at the end of the document, listing all sources cited in the paper. The Works Cited page should be organized alphabetically by the author’s last name.
  8. Hanging indents: Use a hanging indent for the second and subsequent lines of each Works Cited citation.
  9. Italics: Use italics for titles of larger works such as books, journals, and websites, and use quotation marks for titles of shorter works such as articles, poems, and songs.
  10. Page numbers: Number all pages in the upper right-hand corner, including the Works Cited page.

These are the basic guidelines for formatting a paper in MLA style. For more detailed information, refer to the MLA Handbook, 8th edition.