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HIST 102 - History of the United States Since 1865 - Mo

This guide will help you with your research assignment for Eva Mo's History 102 course

Using Word to Format Your Paper

The video below gives you step-by-step instructions for using Word to format your paper.

Please note: Your teacher is the final authority for how you should format your paper. For example, Chicago Manual of Style provides for variations in where you place the page numbers for your paper. Turabian recommends that you pick a format and use if consistently. Therefore, the video may show you some style variations that you will not use in your paper.


Paper Formatting Basics

Margins: Should be set at no less than 1" and no greater than 1.5" on all four edges of the page

Font:  Uniform typeface and font size. 12 point, roman, proportional serif font (such as Times or Palatino). Except for footnotes which should be in a smaller font (usually 10 pt.)

Line-spacing: Double-space throughout the paper, except for the following items which should be single-spaced

  • block quotations
  • table titles and figure captions

The following items should be single-spaced internally but with a blank line between items:

  • certain elements in the front matter, including the table of contents and any lists of figures, tables, and abbreviations
  • footnotes or endnotes
  • bibliographies or reference lists

Paragraphs and indentation: Indent all paragraphs consistently. Use tabs rather than spaces for indentation, columns of text, and other content requiring consistent alignment. Block quotations have their own rules for indentation, depending on whether they are prose or poetry.

Page numbers: Page numbers begin in the header of the first page of text with Arabic number 1. Do not number the title page. Page numbers are usually placed in one of three locations. Choose one of these locations and follow it consistently:

  • centered in the footer (at the bottom of the page),
  • centered in the header (at the top of the page), or
  • flush right in the header. 

For more details check out these paper guidelines:

Major Paper Sections

Title Page 

Class papers will either include a title page or will include the title on the first page of the text. Use the following guidelines to format your title page if your paper includes one:  

  • The title should be centered a third of the way down the page. 
  • Your name and class information should follow several lines later. 
  • For subtitles, end the title line with a colon and place the subtitle on the line below the title.

Main Body

This is the text of your paper.

  • Titles mentioned in the text, notes, or bibliography are capitalized "headline-style," meaning first words of titles and subtitles and any important words thereafter should be capitalized.
  • Titles in the text as well as in notes and bibliographies are treated with quotation marks or italics based on the type of work they name.
  • A prose quotation of 5 or more lines should be "blocked." Block quotations are single spaced and use no quotation marks, but leave an extra space before and after. Indent the entire quotation .5".


  • Label this page Bibliography (for the notes and bibliography system).
  • Label this page References (for the author-date system).
  • Leave two blank lines between "Bibliography" or "References" and your first entry.
  • Leave one blank line between remaining entries.
  • Use "and" not "&" for multiple author entries.
  • Write out publishers' names in full.
  • If there is no publication date of a printed work, use the abbreviation "n.d."
  • Do not use access dates unless publication dates are unavailable.
  • Provide DOIs instead of URLs whenever possible.


  • Note numbers should begin with “1” and follow consecutively throughout your paper.


  • Chicago has an optional system of five heading levels. Usually only used for longer papers.

Tables and Figures

  • If you have any

Sample Papers

To see what your paper should look like, check out these sample papers with built-in instructions.