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Essay Format: Best Tips for Proper Formatting

Academic writing

Essay paper writing


Many students are concerned about the academic essay format they should stick to in their papers. Many of them wonder, ‘What is academic formatting, and what are its key elements?’ The answer is simpler than you might think. Formatting style is all about the way you structure your text, including capitalization, citations, quotes, fonts, reference list, etc. And the more accurate your writing essay format is, the higher scores you are likely to get.

Wrong essay format is considered to be one of the most common student’s mistakes, which can significantly decrease the overall score of the academic paper. Using a correct essay format and meeting the requirements of your professor is a must if you want to get an excellent mark. In case you still hesitate which essay paper format to choose, this article is for you. Here, you will learn more about the most popular styles of formatting, and understand that writing a perfect essay is as easy as one-two-three!

What is essay format?

In case you are writing your first essay, you should start with the basic concepts of text formatting. As you know, most types of academic papers have a similar structure, but might differ in formatting. The most important thing you should start with is asking your professor about the style you have to adhere to in your essay. In most cases, it would be APA, MLA, Harvard, or Chicago. So, as soon as you’ve got acquainted with all the requirements, get down to editing your paper.

Choosing a proper heading for an essay

Heading is a small but still important detail of your paper because it has to be properly formatted. There might be a lot of different headings in your work depending on its length. Headings usually have a title case capitalization, and are either bolded or italicized. For example, level 1 headings in APA and MLA are bolded, but there is a difference in where they are placed on the page. In APA essay heading format, they are centered, but in MLA, they are left-aligned.   

Some people confuse the essay title format with the formatting of level 1 headings. Please note that a title is a separate part of your paper and it is usually placed on the title page, centered, and is neither bolded nor italicized. However, it is necessary to check the requirements of the style you were assigned to follow before formatting anything.

So, as you can see, the essay heading format depends solely on the formatting style. When it comes to the other text, it is only necessary to left-align it and use a standard Times New Roman font, size 12. By the way, avoid using any other text colors except auto (black).

How to write an essay: format for your academic paper

Every student knows that all academic assignments consist of the introduction, the main part, and the conclusion. So let’s consider these parts. The beginning of your paper should contain the main idea of your essay. It is also a good idea to create some hook phrase that catches the interest of the audience and prompts the readers to learn more about the issues you touched upon.

The main part is the biggest section of the academic paper that presents your ideas and arguments. It should be logical, consistent, and well-structured. By the way, according to most writing experts, it is better to start researching the key aspects of your essay as early as possible. Do not postpone your writing for tomorrow, even if it looks absolutely easy to cope with. First, ponder over the ideas for your essay, create a draft, and then get down to choosing a correct format for an essay.

In case you have several ideas you would like to discuss in your paper, it is better to dedicate one paragraph to each. It will help you to create a well-written text with a logical structure. Make sure to have smooth transitions between the sentences. In order to do it, try to use more introductory words, for example, “moreover,” “similarly,” “meanwhile,” “however,” “on the other hand,” “therefore,” “thus,” etc.  

Also, do not oversaturate your paper with long sentences. Such phrases are sometimes hard to understand, while the most important idea you wanted to represent can be easily lost. Moreover, do not go far from the subject; that is why it is best to stick to the strict plan while writing. You may also create a simple table with your key points to make sure all the facts presented are precisely connected to the topic of your paper.

Writing a conclusion, you will need to provide a summary of your academic paper. Most professors believe it should begin with a thesis re-stating. In some cases, you might also include a call-to-action at the end of your essay.

Revision and editing are essential steps in any writing process. Although you might think your paper looks perfect, always proofread it before the submission. The thing is that you might not notice minor mistakes and misprints during the writing process. Therefore, proofreading and editing are likely to make your paper flawless.

By the way, remember that the basic essay format implies using double spacing since it is the most common way of formatting the document. One tip from pro writers – to get similar indents for each paragraph, press Tab key on your keypad before starting the new passage. However, make sure the Tab is set at 0.5 inches.

As for the document structure, it is also quite simple:

  • Title page
  • Abstract, which is a summary of what you are going to write about in your paper. It usually contains 150-250 words, and should only be a part of the paper if your professor asked you to add it.
  • Introduction that includes a thesis statement where you have to emphasize the importance of your academic paper.
  • Body, where the main ideas are presented in separate paragraphs.
  • Conclusion, which is a summary of the results that you have obtained in the course of writing.
  • Reference page (if it was required by your professor).

The appropriate way of referencing sources depends on the formatting style of your academic paper. The matter is that most of the common styles have different rules for formatting the reference page. Make sure you’ve used a proper essay format that is approved by your teacher of professor.

If you face any difficulties when formatting the paper, feel free to contact us for any help. Our team of expert writers will be glad to assist you in proofreading and formatting of your essays. We are also ready to provide recommendations regarding the paper structure and share some tips on how to make it perfect. All our services are available at reasonable prices. So do not hesitate to contact our professional paper writing service and be sure that you will get a top-notch essay in no time and with no efforts!


Academic writing

Essay paper writing

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