Guidelines for Writing Papers

Please make sure that your paper contains the following:

  1. A title—it doesn’t have to be witty but please think of something more descriptive than “Paper #1.”
  2. Student information either on a coversheet or in the top left hand corner of the first page of your paper—be sure to include the following:

Student Name


Professor: Jennifer Ho


  1. Page Numbers—please paginate!
  2. Works Cited—although you will use only one reference, it is always best to include a Works Cited page at the end of your paper.
  3. No spelling errors—PROOFREAD!
  4. Correct MLA formatting—this means that long quotations should be blocked properly, kept as double-spaced; again, for an example of proper MLA formatting, see the sample papers on reserve, the Web CT page about Quotations & MLA style, an MLA book, and your grammar books (which includes proper MLA citation and formatting).
  5. Judicious use of block quotations.  Learn to paraphrase or shorten your block quotations—these should be used sparingly and not as filler for your papers.  Estimate 1 long quotation for a 3-4 page paper and no more than 3 for a 7-8 page paper.  HOWEVER, your long block quotations should be thoroughly explicated and should not exceed 10 lines of your paper.
  6. Meet the length requirement.  If it is a 3-4 page paper, you need to have text that extends to page 3 at least 7/8 down the length of the page.  Papers that end less than 1/2 way on page 3 will be considered incomplete of the length requirement.
  7. Stapled or firmly held together with a paper/binder clip. 
  8. 1 inch margins on all 4 sides with 12 point font used; do not resort to using very large 14 point font to fill your paper.