Can I Use the Subtitles in a Research Paper

Can I Use the Subtitles in a Research Paper?

First of all, it is necessary to provide a detailed explanation of both notions mentioned above. How can we define a research paper? In general, the notion of research paper refers to the form of academic writing that reminds an expanded essay. Such academic writing may imply the writer’s own arguments as well as the ideas mentioned by different researchers in their scientific publications. Another notion that should be discussed is a subtitle that can also be regarded as a subheading. In the simple terms, writing the subtitles implies the use of different section headings within the chapters included in a research paper.

Can You Use the Subtitles in a Research Paper?

Yes, you can use subtitles in your academic writing assignment, but they should be used wisely and correctly. While working on the organization of a research paper, remember that you can use the major sections and different subheadings to set up a good plan for this particular college assignment.

It is a well-known fact that students were not allowed to use headings in formal writing a few years ago. Many American students were assigned with writing a significant number of academic papers related to the area of Business Studies. The interesting thing that should be mentioned is that they were not allowed to use the major headings and subheadings in their formal writings.

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However, taking into consideration the current American system of education, it can be concluded that such strong restrictions do not exist anymore. At present, all the college undergraduates have a great opportunity to structure their writing assignments without the obligation to follow the guidelines. Actually, students are required to take into account some basic rules relative to the structure a research paper as well as to its organization.

Do the APA and MLA Research Papers Have Subtitles?

Yes, they do. Generally speaking, you can create certain subtitles while working on the research paper written either in MLA format or in APA style. The important thing to be mentioned is that each of the two paper formats has certain guidelines that should be followed. If you are interested in this issue, continue reading the article and making the notes. Below, you can find the main guidelines of both paper formats that are discussed separately.

Section Headings in MLA Format

The first and foremost thing that should be mentioned is the fact that MLA style does not require the specific section titles within different parts of a research paper. In the case, if you have decided to use the major headings and subheadings in your paper, do your best to divide the entire writing assignment into several logical sections. In these circumstances, make an attempt to examine different aspects of your research topic. Then, taking into account the topic of your research and the main purpose of this particular writing, you may use some brainstorming techniques to generate the interesting ideas and develop them in your research paper.

For the illustrative purposes, we can take the common topic for the majority of college undergraduates – “Gun Violence in the United States”. Since this topic is too broad, it is highly recommended to divide your research paper into different parts and create the effective headings within the paper’s sections.

  • Section 1 – A Brief History of Guns in the United States;
  • Section 2 –  Current Politics of Gun Control;
  • Section 3 – Gun Ownership in the United States;
  • Section 4 – Policing Gun Violence;
  • Section 5 – More Guns – More Violence or Less Crime;
  • Section 6 –  The Importance of Gun Violence Prevention and Intervention.

Section Headings in APA Format

First of all, you have to read the given instructions carefully. If you are required to use APA format to write a research paper, you have to remember that this particular writing style implies the use of five different heading levels. Apart from that, it is highly recommended to use various subheadings only on the condition that your research paper has two and more subsections within a larger section.

  • First-level headings should be centered and bolded; all the first letters should be capitalized;
  • Second-level – are situated flush left; first letters of all the words have to be capitalized as well;
  • Third-level – bolded, indented five spaces from the left, and followed by a period;
  • Fourth-level –  italicized or bolded, indented five spaces from the left, and followed by a period respectively;
  • Fifth-level –  italicized, indented five spaces from the left, and followed by a period.

Tips on Using Major Headings and Subheadings in the Paper

  1. Make sure that the wording of different questions discussed in your research paper is relevant and consistent.

        

There are three main principles that will help you word the headings:
  • All the major headings and subtitles should be brief and meaningful at the same time;
  • Make sure that your headings are specific;
  • It is required to use the parallel structure within the headings at the same level.

 

  1. Every heading should be linked to a subject of a preceding passage.
  2. Check whether your headings do not have any punctuation mistakes.

Also you can read: Can you use subheadings in a research paper

Is it Important to Use Subheadings in a Research Paper?

Yes, it is critical to use the subtitles in a research paper because of many important reasons.

  • Some subheadings may encourage the readers’ interest in the given writing;
  • These particular elements of paper’s structure make the writing more readable.