MLA outline format
Research studies written in academic circles, college and universities need to be documented. The Modern Language Association or in short the MLA is an association whose conventions on formatting scholarly papers have been followed in schools, colleges, universities around the world. It is one of the preferred styles of formatting research papers as it is easy and less complicated of the lot. It is a guide to scholarly publishing.
What is an outline?
An outline of a research paper is nothing but a model which serves to structure the entire essay and organise key points. The need for making an outline lies in the fact that the outline helps the writer to make a framework of the entire paper such that it simplifies his work and also avoids the possibility of excluding key arguments. You can include all information that is vital to the paper or essay as in what the topic is, what the thesis statement should be, who are the potential audience of the essay etc. there are two different ways in which one can prepare n outline- the full sentence outline and the decimal outline.
The MLA format outline
All research papers need to be formatted in some style and MLA style page formatting is the norm in many places. With knowledge on how to write an outline MLA format of outlines is the next best thing to know. The MLA outline format is one of the widely used styles for formatting the outline of a thesis or a research paper. The reason for it gaining acceptance as the easiest outline format is due to its simple nuances and is more familiar to people involved in scholarly writing. MLA outlines are alphanumeric and this adds to the efficiency of putting forward the idea as well as makes it a trouble free means of documentation.
The MLA outline allows the following characters to be employed in the following order of precedence beginning with Roman Numerals followed by Capitalised letters, tagged on by Arabic numerals and finished with lowercase letters. These letters and numerals divide the outline and for further sub division Arabic numerals and lower case letters are used within parenthesis.
Let us take a look at a sample MLA paper outline in the alphanumeric format. Let us say we are writing an outline for a paper on global warming, then the following way is in which it should be written.
- NATURAL CAUSES
- MAN MADE CAUSES
- EMISSION OF CFCs
- AIR POLLUTION
- Pollution caused by burning of fossil fuel
- Industrial gases
Ii further subdivisions have to be made then they are given in parenthesis first with Arabic numerals and for later subdivision with lower case letters.
Outlines can be written in full sentences as well. In that case the above outline can be rewritten in the following way
- The causative agents of global warming
- Natural causes of global warming have been identified by scientists
- Man- made is also a primary cause for global warming.
- Emission of chlorofluorocarbons results in global warming.
- Air pollution is another causative factor of global warming.
- Air pollution is caused by burning of fossil fuel
- Gases released as an end product of industrial processes also contribute to global warming.
The decimal outline is simpler than the full sentence outline and uses decimals to divide and subdivide. There is no need to write the outline in complete sentences but just the most important point need be written to make the framework. Here is an example for an MLA speech outline written in the decimal form.
1. O Causes
1.1 Natural causes
1. 2 Man-made causes
1.2.2 Air pollution
184.108.40.206 Fossil fuel burning
220.127.116.11 Release of industrial gases
Having seen how easy it is to prepare an outline under the MLA style formatting the following guidelines given below will make your understanding more of the formatting more clearly.
- The outline pages should be numbers using small roman numerals.
- The outline should begin with the thesis statement.
- Choose either the full sentence outline or the decimal outline. The full sentence outline is more popular with scholarly writers.
- The name of the author and the number of the page should be typed on the top write corner half an inch away from the side.
That is all about formatting the outline of your research paper in the MLA outline template.