Writing Assignment Requirements
Appearance of assignments is very important. Do not turn in stained or wrinkled papers. Typed final drafts are expected and possibly required (check with your teacher). Do not forget to label all assignments with full name, teacher’s last name, course title, period number, date and assignment title.
1) Use white 8 ½ x 11-inch printer paper.
2) Use black ink only.
3) Leave a margin of one inch on all sides (Word defaults to 1.25 on the sides – change it!)
4) Double space all lines and indent each paragraph one-half inch (approx. 5 spaces).
5) Use only one side of each sheet of paper.
6) Use 12-point font (Times New Roman only).
7) Do not divide words at the ends of lines.
8) Revise if necessary to make final copy neat (handwritten corrections are not acceptable).
9) Titles, if required, are centered, are in same size and appearance font as paper text, are not underlined, italicized, placed in quotation marks, and do not have periods at the end.
10) Contractions, slang usage (colloquialisms), and specific types of punctuation other than commas, periods, colons and semicolons (i.e., question marks and exclamation points) are generally not accepted in formal writing assignments. Check with your teacher to confirm what is acceptable.
HEADINGS AND HEADERS
Headings go flush left on the first page of your paper. They are double spaced from the first line on.
Headers go flush right and are placed one-half inch (2") from the top of the first and all subsequent pages of your paper (use the Header/Footer option of your word processing program). Headers include last name of student and page number, separated by a space.
Example Heading, Header, and Title (on first page of paper):
English 11 - Period 1
14 Apr. 2013
The Effects of Gamma Radiation on Arizona Maize
Although radiation is a natural part of our universe’s makeup, only recently has
humanity found the resources to control this powerful tool. Common uses for controlled
radiation include healing people who are suffering from diverse illnesses, powering weapons of
mass destruction, and scientific research. However, more and more it is being used for
Arizona’s Department of Agriculture has been experimenting with radiation since . . .
BASIC PAGE MARGINS SETUP IN MICROSOFT WORD
Follow these instructions to set your page margins to one inch on Microsoft Word documents.
1. On the File menu, click Page Setup, and then click the Margins tab.
2. Under Margins, change all margins to 1”.
NOTE: To set 1” as the default margin for all new Word documents, click Default after changing the margin settings.
BASIC HEADER/FOOTER SETUP IN MICROSOFT WORD
NOTE: As per MLA guidelines, headers must appear on first and all subsequent pages of research/analysis papers, provided they are more than one page in length.
1. On the View menu, click Header and Footer.
2. A rectangle will open at the top of the page.
3. Tab over until the cursor is flush right.
4. Type in your last name, a space, and then click on the # symbol in the Header/Footer toolbar that appears.
5. Click on Close in the Header/Footer toolbar.
6. All subsequent pages will be updated with your last name and the correct page number.
APPEARANCE OF SOURCE TITLES
Titles of all books, newspapers, and magazines (including non-fiction, poetry compilations, plays, and anthologies) are italicized. Titles of CDs or complete musical pieces (such as symphonies or concertos) are italicized. Titles of short stories, poems, songs, chapters in books, and magazine or newspaper articles are placed in quotation marks.
Examples for Source Titles:
Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn includes a chapter titled “The Hairball Incident.”
Jimi Hendrix’s album, Are You Experienced?, contains a cover of Bob Dylan’s song, “The Wind Cries Mary.”
The Short Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald includes a story titled, “Bernice Bobs Her Hair.”
Yesterday’s issue of The Arizona Republic included an important article, “The Drying Desert,” about water conservation.
APPEARANCE OF NUMBERS, POSSESSIVE DATES AND ACRONYMS
All numbers under three digits (ninety-nine and under) are spelled out. All years, percentages, and dollar amounts are in numeric format (i.e., 1989, 27%, $500).
Plurals of years do not include apostrophes, UNLESS YOU INTEND THEM TO BE POSSESSIVE. Abbreviation of years should be avoided but, if included, must have an apostrophe BEFORE the abbreviation.
Examples for Years:
The 1970s is often called the Disco Decade. (non-possessive)
1970's fashions were loud and colorful. (possessive)
The ‘70s were an inventive time for rock n’ roll. (abbreviation)
Acronyms (abbreviations for common items) can have “s” added to make them either possessive or plural. All acronyms are in all capital letters, and the plural or possessive “s” is in lower case.
Examples for acronyms:
My family owns two VCRs, four TVs, and hundreds of CDs and DVDs. (plural)
The TV’s cable connection needs to be adjusted. (possessive)
The DVD’s label is printed in font so small that it is hard to read. (possessive)