Is There a Universal Format of a Title Page for a Research Paper?

In the course of one’s college career there are numerous research papers that each professor will require to be written. In addition to the stress of writing hundreds of pages of research based content students also have to fret about the different formats that each professor prefers and each discipline requires. With every paper requiring a title page it leaves one wondering, Is there a universal format that would conform to each writing format? The short answer is no. Each different style which include…

  • APA
  • MLA
  • Chicago

Each of these require a different layout for their title page but the good news is that they all require basically the same information. Below I will expound on the title page requirements for each style as well as creating short examples of each.


APA is the most commonly used format for research papers in the junior and senior levels in college depending on your course of study. This style is used mostly in the fields of psychology, criminology, business, nursing, education, and economics. In the APA format your title page will need to include…

  • The title of your paper
  • Your name
  • The school which you attend or have graduated from
  • A running head (In header)
  • A page number. (In header)
  • Date (not all professors require this on the title page)

These are important pieces of information that quickly inform readers of the author, the author’s credibility, and the contents of the paper. Below is the basic outline for a title page in APA.


MLA is the other most frequently used research paper format in many Universities. This style is most frequently used in the liberal arts and most often in the humanities. For this style there is not a title page separate from the rest of the paper. Instead, the information normally required for a title page is included on the first page of the paper. The first page should look something like this.


Chicago style is not widely used in the academic community. However, the one place that it does occasionally hold in academia is the humanities. The Chicago format requires much of the same information as APA but is laid out as illustrated below.

The one thing not shown in the above example is that the title should be a third of the way down the page and the remaining information should be close to two-thirds down the page. As you can see there is not a universal format for a title page but much of the information is universal. Just a little attention to the layout and you will have a perfect title page for any research paper.

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