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Good essay titles not only identify the essay’s subject, but they can also give readers clues about important elements of the essay: It probably seems obvious that a title should give the reader at least a hint about the essay’s subject, but you’d be surprised how often it doesn’t!
For example, eliminate "My Ideas on Improving Child Care in America," but keep "Summer in the Park: My Life as a Professional Nanny." Eliminate any ideas that refer to your essay or research itself.
For example, eliminate "Hamlet: A Research Paper." Eliminate any ideas that contain words that could discriminate against a person's gender, race, religion, age or sexual orientation, including those that use the words "he, him or his" to indicate both genders.
Most importantly, the use of MLA style can protect writers from accusations of plagiarism, which is the purposeful or accidental uncredited use of source material produced by other writers.
If you are asked to use MLA format, be sure to consult the is available in most writing centers and reference libraries.
MLA Style also provides writers with a system for referencing their sources through parenthetical citation in their essays and Works Cited pages.
Writers who properly use MLA also build their credibility by demonstrating accountability to their source material.
A forceful, direct title is perfect for an angry rant or a somber piece of persuasion.
It’s possible for a title to establish both the tone and subject … For instance, “A Scholarly Examination of Chinese Art” identifies a subject and a tone, but if the essay actually focuses on fifteenth-century Chinese pottery, specificity is lacking.
It is the style standard adopted by many university professors and scholarly journals, especially in the humanities and social science divisions.
Learning to write an essay title in MLA format is a necessary skill for any scholarly writer.