A Student’s Guide to Different Essay Formatting Styles

Academic writing comes with its fair share of rules and regulations. College students need to follow them strictly in order to score well. The three main styles for formatting college essays, dissertations, and papers are MLA, APA, and Chicago. Your institution will require you to follow one of these styles for formatting your work. If you need help understanding it, it’s best to reach out to an essay helper

This guide will provide a basic explanation of the rules of different formatting styles. By following them, you will face minimal issues while citing in any of these styles.

Understanding the APA Paper Formatting Style

APA stands for the American Psychological Association. Scholars and students use this style of formatting for lab papers and written and scientific records. The main objective of this format is to capture the reader’s attention and give them information about the sources you’ve used. 

Rules of APA format

  • Every page contains a numeric value present on its top right side. 
  • This numeric value has a short work-related title in the center. 
  • You should put double spaces between the lines. The lines should be in Times New Roman font.
  • You should also double-space the note on the lower end of the pages.
  • The reference list must have bibliographies.
  • You should put the reference list with the scholar’s name in the following format:
  1. Put the last name.
  2. Put the author’s name’s first word.
  3. Write the author’s middle name. 
  4. Capitalize the initial word of the publication title. Don’t put any quotation symbols there. 

If you face any issues while formatting your assignment in APA, get expert essay writing help. The assistance of professional subject specialists will strengthen your knowledge about formatting styles. 

Understanding the MLA Paper Formatting Style

If you are a humanities student, you must be familiar with the MLA style. This style has certain guidelines you need to follow. Although it is much similar to the APA style, you must recognize some differences. These lie in the Works Cited page and the in-text citing.

Rules of MLA format

  • You must set 1-inch margins.
  • Select Times New Roman in 12 size points.
  • Ensure that you choose doubled spacing.
  • Orient the text left side and keep the right side ragged.
  • The first word in a section should have half inch indent. This is for the text.
  • The indent for all the lines of the Works Cited section is 0.5 inches.
  • The indent for quotes is 0.5 inches.
  • You must number the pages at the top-right part. Before the number, write your surname.
  • Align the page evenly to the left-hand side.

Seek the help of an essay helper if you feel confused about spacing, indent, or margins. They will specify all the details so you can use the MLA template correctly.

What are the Similarities and Variations Between MLA and APA Formats

Both APA and MLA formats are similar in some aspects. Knowing the similarities and differences between both will ensure you understand the two.

Common aspects of MLA and APA essay formats

  • Both formats use similar spacing with indents for each paragraph.
  • Both these styles have bibliography pages containing citations. MLA has a Works Cited page, while the APA style has a References page.
  • These formats use the parenthetical citation system. In APA, the year is added after the last name and the number of the page. 
  • MLA and APA styles implement alphabetical (ABC) listing.

Differences between MLA and APA essay formats

  • Researchers of the Humanities discipline use the MLA style, while Social Sciences scholars use APA.
  • In the Works Cited page of MLA format, there is no mention of the year after the name of the author. In contrast, the References page in the APA format essays includes the year after the author’s name. 
  • The template for in-text citing in both these essay formatting styles also differs. 

Understanding the Chicago Paper Formatting Style

The University of Chicago developed this citation style. Students and scholars pursuing history and some subjects of social sciences use it for formatting their papers. Also known as the Turabian style, it is a bit different than APA and MLA. 

You can get formatting advice for it by contacting an essay writing help service. In order to apply this style, you must be aware of certain rules. Find them in the section below.

Rules of Chicago format

  • Double-spacing must be everywhere on the page.
  • The best font choice is Times New Roman in 12 points.
  • The title should be at the end of the page.
  • Put your full name at the center.
  • At the end of the title page should be your course number, professor’s name, and date, all double-spaced.
  • Keep 1-inch margins from the right.
  • In the page numbers, put your surname and page number on the top-right.
  • Do not write a number on the title page. Instead, write 2 on the first page.
  • You must insert footnotes on quoted content.
  • For the bibliography, collect the necessary data and insert it into a specialized citation site.

Understanding the Harvard Essay Citation Style

Most essays and papers in the education area use this referencing style. It uses references in the text and the list at the bottom Feel free to approach an essay helper if you need more advice on it or any other citation style.

Rules of Harvard format

  • Have a one-inch margin from every side.
  • You can use only the Ariel or Times New Roman format in 12 points.
  • Double-space your lines.
  • Align your text to the left.
  • Indent every paragraph’s first line by 0.5 inches.
  • Put a title in the first page’s center before the text. 
  • Put a title before your paper’s text, and center align it.
  • Capitalize starting words of the title.
  • The citation is parenthetical. It has the last name of the author and the year it was published. 
  • The name of the authors should not include parenthesis in the text. 
  • If you refer to an author discussed in the secondary source, mention the original author’s name. However, mention that this author is ‘cited in’ the research source you are employing. 

Format Your Paper Using any Style! 

Formatting is necessary for a course paper, dissertation, or essay. Use the rules that apply to your subject’s paper and make it more formal and credible. You can also approach an essay writing helper if you have doubts about style. They will guide you on the specific style and give tips on structuring your content. 

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