Essays academic service


Form and style thesis reports term papers

How to Properly Format Your Papers Knowing the Styles and When to Use Them In academic writing, how you present your information technically is often seen as important as the ideas you are putting forth.

How to Format Your Research Paper

Proper citing, quoting and referencing of source material allows you to convey your breadth of research in a language commonly shared by others in your discipline. Giving others a chance to review and compare your work under these established guidelines enables your instructors to better see the work on its own merits, opposed to getting sidetracked by technical inefficiencies.

MLA, APA, & CMS: How to Properly Format Your Papers

You MUST follow the rules like every other student: Writing for any academic purpose carries with it certain expectations and formatting consistencies, and a failure to properly understand how or why you cite your sources in a specific way can have negative effects on your written projects and communications.

These are the official guidelines put forth by the American Psychological Association, now in its sixth edition.

This is the preference of the social sciences, so if you are studying sociology, psychology, medicine, or social work you are going to know APA style. The Modern Language Association provides guidelines you will be familiar with if you are focused on the Humanities: These are the style guidelines put forth in the Chicago Manual of Style, now in its 16th edition. While these formatting methods will share many characteristics such as margins and spacing, how they attribute references to source materials is the main differentiator.

For example, APA lists "references" while MLA calls the same thing "works cited" - a small but important distinction that might actually affect your grade. Typically, you are going to use one style for most of your classes and communications, but there is certainly the possibility that you'll need to know how to use any one of these three common styles. The good news is it is not hard to get up-to-speed on any one of them and use them properly. Get the Latest Updates Regardless of which style you are using, it is imperative to get the most recent version of the guidelines to ensure your paper is as accurate as it can be.

Each of the sources have updated their guidelines multiple times over the years, so working with the current standards is goal one. CMS is commonly used in traditional book publishing and academic publishing situations, so if you are doing post-graduate writing, it is good to know. The main thing that seems to be changing in the rules for all of them is form and style thesis reports term papers the proper attribution of web-related sources, so you are going to want to re-check that you are working from the most recent versions of whichever style guide you need.

Beware the Pitfalls The common mistakes being made in properly styling citations and references might be as simple as not downloading the most recent updates; however, it may also be a case where students are simply not understanding how to infuse referencing properly. He is currently working on his own education specialist degree Ed. APA 6there are other, perhaps more common instances where a student fails to properly reference the source materials within writing assignments. This is particularly true when citing content from the Internet.

Understanding how to properly reference and cite source materials adds power to any student paper, because the papers can be used to show a proper understanding and blending of source ideas - a critical concept in higher learning. Many of my students might complain about it, but the ones that succeed are the ones who are actively trying to use citing resources to their own argument's advantage. Margaret Walters of Kennesaw State Universitywhere she and her students have used primarily MLA guidelines in their writing, editing and literature classes.

Walters has taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate level writing courses at Kennesaw State University for over 15 years. Walters said, "The most common problems I see with MLA style occur in the writing, meaning the text itself, not the bibliography or Works Cited. In the text, the most common problems are: If they use the resources offered, most students are not going to struggle to meet the guidelines.

Knowing the Styles and When to Use Them

Walters and Professor Long advise students to use strong and verifiable resources to make your formatting job easier.

Not every situation calls for the same style guide, so checking with the experts on your campus is always a smart idea. The Bottom Line The reality is, depending on your discipline, there may be only one type of style that you need to use, ever.

  1. The Modern Language Association provides guidelines you will be familiar with if you are focused on the Humanities. CMS is commonly used in traditional book publishing and academic publishing situations, so if you are doing post-graduate writing, it is good to know.
  2. However, this is not saying the rules for how to properly cite resources and references is not going to continue to change and evolve over time.
  3. Double-space and type the table title flush left italicized using uppercase and lowercase letters. Giving others a chance to review and compare your work under these established guidelines enables your instructors to better see the work on its own merits, opposed to getting sidetracked by technical inefficiencies.
  4. Order of Major Sections Each of these sections if present begins on a new page.

However, this is not saying the rules for how to properly cite resources and references is not going to continue to change and evolve over time. You will be held responsible for being current.

Beware the Pitfalls

As a student or in post-college academic writing, you want your work to shine and to always show your best efforts. This means checking on the rules to properly style and format your papers. Use the links and information above to help ensure you are forever properly dotting your I's and crossing your T's according to the latest and greatest rules.