Pros and Cons
Number your pages consecutively throughout the essay in the upper right hand corner, flush with the right margin and 1/2″ from the top. The MLA Handbook recommends that you type your last name just before the page number in case the pages get misplaced (134). On page 4 of your essay, for example, your top right-hand corner should show: Jones 4 Page numbers must be written in Arabic numerals. Do not add anything fancy to decorate a page number. Do not underline it, enclose it between hyphens, parentheses, asterisks, or precede it with “Page”, “Pg. “, “P. “, or add a period after the number. In other words, DO NOT use any of the following:
Electronic submission of documents is becoming more common as e-mail is being used widely. This system will facilitate the citation of sources by identifying a specific paragraph for reference very quickly. . Spacing Between Lines Whether your essay is handwritten, typed or printed, the entire essay should be double-spaced between lines along with 1″ margin on all sides for your teacher to write comments.
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Spacing Between Words In general, leave one space between words and one space after every comma, semi-colon, or colon. Traditionally, two spaces are required at the end of every sentence whether the sentence ends with a period, a question mark, or an exclamation mark. Although it is not wrong to leave two spaces after a period, it is quite acceptable nowadays to leave only one space after each punctuation.
However, NO space should be left in front of a punctuation mark; for example, the following would be incorrect: op . cit . or “Why me ? ” For details on how to place tables, illustrations, figures, musical notations, labels, captions, etc. in your essay, please see the MLA Handbook (134-137). 6. Indentation If a handwritten essay is acceptable to your teacher, remember to double-space all lines, and begin each paragraph with an indentation of 1″ from the left margin. Use the width of your thumb as a rough guide. If you are using a typewriter or word processor on a computer, indent 5 spaces or 1/2″ at the beginning of each paragraph.
Indent set-off quotations 10 spaces or 1″ from the left margin. Your instructor may give you a choice to indent or not to indent your paragraphs. Whichever one you choose to use, you must be consistent throughout your essay. If you are NOT indenting, you will start each paragraph flush to the left margin. It is essential that you double-space between lines and quadruple-space between paragraphs. When paragraphs are not indented, it is difficult for a reader to see where a new paragraph begins, hence quadruple-space is called for