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How To Title an Essay: Useful Tips and Advice

Academic writing

Essay paper writing


Writing an essay title might seem to be an easy task when you have completed similar assignments before, but it is not the case if it is your first task of that kind. However, regardless of whether it is your first essay or not, the question of how to properly title your work is still critical. For some students, it might become a considerable difficulty, even if they have a good grip on the subject matter, while others will easily come up with a catchy heading that will awake readers’ interest.

How to create a title for an essay? Is there a secret for writing a good title? In this article, experts from our essay writing service are going to give you useful tips and advice on how to title your paper.

Why Your Paper Heading Format and Title are So Important?

A proper paper heading format and a good title present your work to the audience even before one starts reading it. The thing is that the title gives your reader a fist impression of your essay and sets one’s expectations at a specific level. Having looked at your apa essay heading format and having glanced at your title, the reader would already know whether your paper is going to be interesting or boring. That is why you have to pay maximum attention to this aspect.

Essay Heading Format

There are many ways of formatting the essay title. Let’s consider one of them. MLA (Modern Language Association is a leading association in the US for those who study language and literature) recommends the following way to format your essay heading. We offer you to get acquainted with the main essay heading format rules:

  • Fonts: 12-point Times New Roman.
  • Double Space: the body of your essay should contain no single spacing and no extra spacing anywhere in the text. Don’t add extra space between paragraphs as well.
  • Heading: type your name in the upper left corner, as well as the name of your supervisor, class, and date.
  • Margins: one-inch on the top, bottom, left, and right.
  • Page numbering: make sure your last name and the page number are shown in the upper right corner of every page, starting from the very first page.
  • The title: place it above the first line of your essay in the center of the sheet. Use the same font for the title and the whole text, with no bold, italics, as well as underlining or quotation marks.
  • Indentation: indent the first line of every paragraph - ½ inch, or five spaces, or by pressing [Tab] once.

Here is the sample MLA-recommended formatting we promised to provide:

                                                                                                                    Perkins 1        

Your Name

Mr. Springfield

ENG 1002-07

9 March 2019

                                    “To Be Or Not To Be: Main Dilemmas of The Hamlet” 

You may use these recommendations for both school and college paper heading format. However, it’s important to note that each academic facility may have its own requirements. Therefore, before using the tips we offer, make sure there are no specific rules provided by your teacher or professor. Rest assured that а properly formatted essay title page is a proof of your knowledge of guidelines, which may earn you a positive attitude of your professor.

How to Write a Title in a Paper

It goes without saying that the body of your essay should be flawless, but the wrong title can also rain on your parade as it can damage the quality of your work. The title gives your reader a good hint on how your argument is further developed; this is essentially important for argumentative essays, which constitute a large portion of school or college essays.

The title will also help you to engage the audience in reading your paper. In this way, you will have an opportunity to showcase your writing skills and profound knowledge of the specific issue. Finally, it is hard to overestimate the importance of the ability to get the audience on your side before they start reading. Such a skill will be essential if you choose writing career path in the future.

The thing is that writing success depends on how many people get interested in reading your article or papers as soon as they see the title. Office memos, email campaigns, page promotion in social networks, opinion journalism, and serious long read articles – all these kinds of writing and content creation are successful only if your title is catchy.

How to Make a Good Essay Title

First, you need to learn how to distinguish a good essay title from a bad one. Therefore, you need to know how to spot the important features of the titles that might come to your notice. Ask yourself a few questions:

  • Is this title eye-catching? Would you like to read further once you have seen it?
  • Is it plausible? Doesn’t it look like a hard-to-believe and untrustworthy statement? This is a mistake many writers still make, titling their papers like “The City of Atlantis is Found” or “The Problem of Cancer is Solved.”
  • Is it easy to read? Nobody likes to trudge through a difficult-to-understand title as it is supposed to deliver the writer’s point instantly. That is why confusing phrases, obscure meanings, as well as long and complicated structures should be avoided.
  • Is the title accurate? A wrong title can mislead the reader, giving him or her a wrong idea about what he or she is going to read in the paper. People can easily understand that the title was irrelevant and will probably be disappointed after reading the text.

The Components You Need to Include in Your Title

There are some aspects that will make your title interesting and relevant:

  • A catchy hook. A title provides great room for creativity as it is designed to capture the reader’s attention. An original way to introduce your paper is to use a catchy phrase or a question followed or preceded by a related statement. “Who Stands Behind? New Casinos Opening Up in the USA”, or “Cry Me A River, Trump Enablers” is a good example. You could easily find many examples of creative titles for essays on the Internet.
  • Topic keywords. These are the words representing the semantic kernel of your essay and briefly describing what your writing is about. The article you are reading now contains “title” and “essay” in its own title, and that is the subject we are exploring.

How To Create An Essay Title

Once you have understood the importance of essay titling and learned the dos and don’ts of this art, you can further concentrate on how to properly title an essay. Don’t lose heart if a good title does not surface right away. Even the best writers might have problems with choosing a perfect headline.

Essay Should Come First, Title - Last

It is often better to write your essay and then to ponder on the headline – if only you are not given the title in the beginning as an assignment with no option to alter it. Most experienced authors create the title having completed their writing or most of it. This approach allows them to develop a clear idea about the topic and focus on keywords that have to be used in the title. So write your essay, re-read it, and get your creative insight about the best title for your paper.

Otherwise, you could find yourself spending too much time ransacking your brain in the attempts to give a name to a not yet written article. Actually, many students make this mistake.

Make Use Of Your Thesis Statement

If you create a clear and straightforward thesis statement in your introduction, you will have a better idea about the title. So it is a good idea to take your thesis or a part of it, add a hook and a focus keyword, use your creativity, and voila! Here is your best title. So as you can see, creative titles for a paper would come to your mind only when your paper is finished.

For instance, if your thesis statement is “Time travel is even theoretically impossible because it creates multiple unresolvable paradoxes,” then your title can be “Mission Impossible: Time Travel to Create Multiple Paradoxes.”

Popular Phrases That Make Good Titles for Essays

As you know, “Mission Impossible” cliché refers to the well-known series of American action films. Such clichés or popular phrases could make good hooks if they are properly used. But be careful with possible wrong allusions: “Here We Go Again: Time Travel to Create Multiple Paradoxes” is a sort of misleading hook to your readers, which may distract them from your thesis statement.

Mind the Tone of Your Essay And Your Title

It is true that the way your title sounds might be even more important than what it actually means. However, make sure that the tone of your essay and the tone of its title resonate with the same vibes. A serious topic article should not have a witty or eccentric headline. You may demonstrate your sense of humor in the body of your essay when it is really appropriate and applicable, but your headline should be more restrained anyway, with no jargon.

Be Careful With Catchy Titles For Essays

Don’t go over the top trying to create interesting titles for essays as an extremely eye-catching title may ward your readers off with the scent of yellow journalism. Yellow-press title is a declining trend as the audience becomes more sophisticated. And you should definitely avoid this style in your writing.

Use A Good Quote

If you want to feature a popular quote as a hook part of your title, it’s a good idea as well. Just make sure it is handy and relevant to your subject and thesis statement. If you are crafting an essay about well-known literary writing, you can use a famous quote from it: “To Be or Not to Be: Main Dilemmas in Hamlet.” However, be careful and reasonable with your hooks.

Try To Sum Up Your Writing in Three Words

While the title you end up with might be much longer, a Three Words Title exercise is very useful to prime your mind for the creation of a good title. You could find it quite difficult to sum up your entire essay or even your thesis statement in just three words, but it would be much easier to build your perfect title based on them.

How To Pick The Right Title

Students are given the option to choose the topic for their essay very often. This task can be difficult too. Look for a meaningful and captivating topic that offers you a chance to write a good persuasive or argumentative essay. A workable and attention-grabbing topic will certainly help you to stand out with your essay and bring you an excellent mark.

The Conclusion

Never underestimate the importance of essay title. Follow our recommendations, do your assignment as advised, and you will be surprised by your headway in essay writing and titling!


Academic writing

Essay paper writing

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