If you’ve ever wondered how to create an MLA format on Google Docs, you are welcome to my TED talk today.
It is straightforward to create an MLA format on Google Docs. I’ll show you how in this article.
Although Google Docs provides an MLA format template, you can still create yours if you choose.
What is MLA Format?
While the Modern Language Association format of writing may be distinct to everyone, below is what its general format entails;
- One-inch page margins on all sides
- A Works Cited page at the end of the paper
- Double-spaced text with no extra spaces between paragraphs
- A centered title above the body text
- A header with your last name and a page number in the top-right of every page
- Your full name, the instructor’s name, the course name, and the due date in the top-left of the first page
- Size 12 Times New Roman font
- Body paragraphs begin with a 1/2-inch indent
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How to Use an MLA Format Template In Google Docs
Google Docs has some templates it has made available to its users to enable them to create an MLA document.
To use the Google Doc MLA template, follow the steps below.
- Open a new document and click on File > New > From template.
- In the newly opened window, search for “MLA Format”
- A new document with dummy text will be opened in the MLA format. All you need to do is to replace the texts with your own texts.
How to DO MLA Format on Docs
If you’d prefer to set the MLA format manually rather than use the templates, follow these steps to do so.
The good part is once you have set it up, you can also save it as your own, and you don’t have to repeat the process again.
- Change the font to “Times New Roman” and the font size to 12.
- Select “Insert > Headers & Footers > Header
- The font for the header changes back to the default. So, you’d have to change it back to “Times New Roman” and size 12.
- Type your last name followed by a space, then select Insert > Page numbers
- Adjust your page numbers to your desired preference.
- Tap anywhere below the header, then select “Format > Line Spacing > Double.
- Type your name, the instructor’s name, the course name, and the due date on different lines.
- Press “Enter” to go to the next line, then type the title of your paper and select “Center Align”
- Click “Enter” to go to the next line, and select “Left Align”
- Press the “Tab” key to indent, then start typing your first paragraph. Ensure you begin every new paragraph with an indent.
- When you’re done with the body of your text, select “Insert > Break > Page Break to create a blank page for the Works Cited page.
How to Set MLA Works Cited in Google Docs
The last page of your paper should have the “Works Cited”(without quotation marks) centered below the heading of the page.
The format for citing each of the works is different depending on the format of the source.
For example, articles found on the web may use the following format;
- Author name (last, first). “Title.” Publication, Date (day, month, year). URL. Accessed date.
Here’s an example from Lifewire using this format;
Kelion, Leo. “Coronavirus: UK contact-tracing app is ready for Isle of Wight downloads.” BBC News, 4, May 2020. https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-52532435. Accessed 8 May 2020.
Sources should be alphabetized by the author’s last name. All works cited entries should have a hanging indent, which means that each line after the first is indented.
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How to Create a Hanging Indent In Google Docs
To create a hanging indent in Google Docs for your Works Cited page, use the following steps;
- Highlight all the text on your Works Cited page and select Format > Align & Indent > Indentation options.
- In the Indention options dialog box, select Hanging from the Special indent dropdown box and then select Apply.
How to Use an MLA Format Template in Google Docs
Open a new document and select File > New > From template.
The template gallery will open in a separate browser tab. Scroll down to the Education section and select Report MLA Add-on.
A new document will open with dummy text that you can replace with your own.
Times New Roman
Times New Roman is a good choice. Unless otherwise specified, your font size should be 12 pt., and your document should have 1-inch margins on all sides. The first line of each paragraph should be indented one-half inch from the left margin (the tab key is set up to do this in MS Word).
Open a document in Google Docs and click Tools. Citations. Select your formatting style from MLA, APA, or Chicago Author-Date in the sidebar.
A title page is usually not required for your paper in MLA style. Instead, MLA recommends including a header on your first page listing your name, your instructor’s name, the course name and number, and the submission date, followed by the title of your paper.
Include your last name and page numbers in the upper right-hand corner of every page. The page numbers will be one-half inch from the top and flush with the right margin. If your instructor prefers no page number on the first page, begin numbering from 2 on the second page.
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