I'm writing a 5,000 word essay, or dissertation, and I'm not very experienced. I've been given no format to write in.

Originally, I was using Arial, with a size of 11-point and 1-inch line-spacing with justified alignment.

I’ve changed my font to Times New Roman, size 11, and 1.15 spacing. Should I left-align my text? Would doing so improve marks / readability? I find the justified text looks much better...

Should I italicise my quotes? I find it to be much easier to tell an in-line quote from text, when it is italicised.

What’s your standard formatting for an essay.

  • 1
    Whatever format you choose, the most important thing is: be consistent. Mar 5, 2017 at 0:30

1 Answer 1


For legal submissions, Times 12 point, 1 inch margins all around, double-spaced, are required. If your instructor cares, there should be instructions. If your instructor doesn't care, then you get to create your own style, as long as it's not too far-out.

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