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MLA Format: First Page

This information is based on the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, Seventh Edition, 2009.


No title page is required for a research paper. (If your instructor requires a title page, follow his or her instructions.) The first page of an MLA-formatted essay or research paper includes the following information: 

Page heading:

  • The upper right corner of the page should include your last name, followed by a space, followed by the page number. To insert automatic page numbering in Microsoft Word 2007, double click the header area to open the “Header and Footer Tools” tab. Click the “Page Number” tab, and select the appropriate page numbering format.

Your name and course information:

  • Type your first and last name 1" from the top of the first page, aligned with the left margin.
  • Double-space and type your instructor’s name under your name.
  • Double-space and type the department name, and course number. (The section number is optional.)
  • Double-space and type the submission date on the next line. 

Paper Title:

  • Double-space and center your title. If the title is more than one line long, double-space between lines and use an inverted pyramid style. (See Example.)


  • Double-space and begin the body of your paper. Indent each paragraph ½".
  • Note: MS Word for Office 2007 adds an extra space between paragraphs by default. Check the “Don’t add space between paragraphs of the same style” box from the “Paragraph” menu on the Home tab to create consistent double spacing.



JPEG of MLA title page standards.