What Type of Research Papers Call for MLA Format?
MLA and APA formats are the two paramount essay formats in use today. They are the giants of academia, and throughout your academic career, you will often meet both of them. Which one you see first is mostly going to depend on you introduction, to essay writing and your geographical location. For example, in America, APA will be more likely to be taught first in the coastal states and MLA is going to be taught more in the American Midwest. Eventually, however, you will enter the real academic world and you are going to need to be able to determine what format to use by yourself.
MLA is the style of the Modern Language Association , which is a powerful cabal in the world of academia. It has been in use since at least 1985, and has been used in force in North America and other geographical locations. The format is mostly used when publishing in the humanities, and most students will meet it through English Studies. Mostly this is used for studying such subjects as media studies, cultural studies, and modern language. Disciplines like history and philosophy, however, are not included in this; they are under the doctrine of The Chicago Manual of Style.
The Chicago Manual of Style is a separate entity, and is used for professional works in philosophy and history. It is not unheard of for high schools to impose MLA on these fields, however, because they do not intend to teach multiple styles too many students who will not continue on to college. This is a much older formatting method, and has been in existence since 1906, which is over a century. It is widely used in many fields and is quite respected all over the world.
APA format is short for the style of the American Psychological Association , which is a style guide, offered from said association. It originally was used in the social and behavioral sciences, but now is widely accepted as standard in all styles around the world. There are many topics that it covers, such as the structure of all the kinds of research papers, rules on spelling, referencing authors, and research properly, and so forth. As strict science papers and research papers are not often written by students, often they will not encounter this style until college. It also deals with a lot more data, so there are standards here for tables and graphs.