AHS English Stylebook

Proper Paper Format

(Under Construction - not agreed upon)

Students must submit papers following a simple set of guidelines. 

1.  Paper - Use standard-sized (8 ½ x 11 inch) notebook paper for handwritten classwork.  Avoid using spiral notebook paper unless as part of a diary or journal.  And use standard-sized (8 ½ x 11 inch), 20-pound (standard), white, multi-purpose or photocopy or typing paper for printed work.

2.  Margins - Top, bottom, and side margins shall be 1", no more, no less.  Your teacher may choose to use the space for comments.

3.  Typeface Size - Use a 12 point typeface.  Smaller typefaces are tiring for your teacher to read.  Larger typefaces suggest that you are trying to make a small amount of work look larger, drawing more attention to the work’s inadequacies.

4.  Typeface Style - Use a standard typeface with serifs like the one used in this document.  These typefaces have names like Book, Times, Roman, 20th Century, etc.  Serifs are the small lines at the ends of the parts that make up each letter.  Avoid stylized type faces, script, ultra-bold, light, etc.  When reading hundreds of papers, these typefaces create fatigue in the reader.

5.  Heading - Your heading must be placed on your paper.  The heading must include your first and last name, your class/period/instructor, and the date.  The information makes returning a lost paper easy.  It should look like this:

Elmer Fudd
English II, P3, Mr. Aristotle
September 1, 2007

6.  Line Spacing - Most handwritten work should be single-spaced unless directed otherwise.  All printed work must be double-spaced; this allows your teacher to place comments between the lines. 

7.  Paragraphing - Each paragraph must have its first word indented 5 spaces.  Do not insert empty lines between paragraphs.  In single-spaced business letters and advertising, paragraphs may not have the first word indented; the paragraphs are identified with an empty line between the paragraphs.  Do not use this style in your English class.

8.  Integration of Quotations - All quotations must be placed within quotation marks.  Every quotation must be integrated into one of your sentences: a quotation must not stand by itself as its own sentence.

9.  Cover Sheet and Rubric - Many teachers will ask you to include an assignment cover sheet and blank rubric when you submit your paper.  Proper heading information must appear on both the cover sheet and the rubric. 

10.  Drafts - Save all drafts of your paper.  In particular, save drafts on which you or others have made suggestions or corrections.  The drafts are a record of your process and may help you illustrate your effort on a composition.

11.  Printer Problems / Computer Problems - If you have a problem with your printer or computer, you must solve the problem before the paper is due.  “My printer isn’t working” will not be an acceptable excuse.  Make sure you back-up all work onto media other than your hard drive so that you will have a copy when your hard drive crashes.  When you have a computer malfunction or when your friend or your teacher loses your paper, you will have a back-up copy which you can use.  Your Turnitin.com copy is also a back-up.

12.  Turnitin.com - All writing significant writing assignments will be submitted to Turnitin.com.  If you have trouble using the web-site, make a copy of the assignment on alternate media, and try to submit the assignment again from another computer.  Turnitin.com does a good job of checking to see if any part of your work has been written by someone else.  Microsoft Works format (not Microsoft Word) is incompatible with most every other word processing program.  Microsoft Word = .doc and  Microsoft Works = .wps.

13.  All work shall be placed in your student portfolio after it has been reviewed by you and your parents/family/tutor/mentor.