You will often be asked to write research papers throughout school. These papers are academic and require you to gain knowledge on a topic or subject. You will then formulate a point of view on the topic which you can argue and support through your research with sources, statistics, data, and examples. Most often, you will have to format your paper for the MLA standards. However, some papers which are more scientific and data heavy require an APA formatting. Both styles have some similarities when it comes to the actual typing of the paper. These similarities include 1-inch margins on all sides, page numbers, double-spacing, and 12-point font.
Longer essays may also contain an introductory page that defines words and phrases of the essay's topic. Most academic institutions require that all substantial facts, quotations, and other porting material in an essay be referenced in a bibliography or works cited page at the end of the text. This scholarly convention helps others (whether teachers or fellow scholars) to understand the basis of facts and quotations the author uses to support the essay's argument and helps readers evaluate to what extent the argument is supported by evidence, and to evaluate the quality of that evidence. The academic essay tests the student's ability to present their thoughts in an organized way and is designed to test their intellectual capabilities.