Which Documentation Style To Use For A Research Paper: Formatting Tips


When writing any academic paper, it is important that the work is formatted correctly. Sometimes, you will have to use your own judgment when it comes to how to format the work and, if this is the case, then you should try and be as consistent as possible. For example, when it comes to writing citations, then you should ensure that each one is done in the same way. Equally, if you need to include lists, then you should ensure that they are ordered consistently throughout your paper.


Alternatively, it may be that your teacher has some specific instructions that they would like you to follow. If this is the case, then you should adhere to any requirements that they might put forward.


However, when it comes to writing research papers, if you do need to follow any formatting instructions, then it will generally be the case that you will be asked to adhere to the instructions contained with any official formatting guides. For example, you may be asked to follow APA style or MLA style, or any number of different writing guides.


Generally, you will be able to find further details about the various writing guides by looking online. Equally, many writing guides will be available in printed format, which is particular useful for people who are not very computer literate.


What do the different formatting guides say?


Essentially, there are a variety of different rules and guidelines that the different formatting style guides may require you to follow. For example, most style guides will include various details about how to present your work, as well as instructions relating to the line spacing that you will need to use. Equally, some style guides will include details of indentations that you need to include the beginning of each paragraph.


Most formatting guides will also include details of any citations or references that you need to include. For example, you may have to write the citation or reference in a particular order, and include a certain set of details.


When to format your work


Ideally, you should have a reasonable understanding of any instructions prior to writing the work. This will make it considerably easier at the end, as you will hopefully have followed most of the formatting rules as you went along. However, whilst proofreading and editing the work, you should also keep an eye out for any formatting mistakes that you might have made.