How to Write an Essay in Google Docs: Tips and Hacks

The importance of essay writing goes way beyond academia. Essays are powerful communicative tools that carry a specific purpose and aim to deliver a message to an audience. Such papers can be argumentative, expository, and descriptive. They must follow a structure and meet a particular format.

If you are a student, you must know how tiresome it might be to compose an essay. Of all the tasks in college, writing tasks are predominant. So like it or not, you have to work on them regularly and do your best to score high.

The first step toward successful essay writing is determining the app you are going to use to write an essay. Several options exist, but the best one is using Google Docs. The article explains why Google Docs is the best app for essay writing and how to write an essay using the app quickly and effectively.


google docs

What is Google Docs?

First, though, it would be best to start with a general question – what is Google Docs? Google Docs is an online word processor produced by Google. Although released in 2006, only recently has it come into the limelight.

Google Docs is a fantastic application for essay writing because it is:

  • Brisk: The app works impressively fast. It performs actions quickly and doesn’t freeze.
  • Reliable: Google Docs saves progress every time any action happens. You don’t need to save it manually.
  • Simple: The app doesn’t have unnecessary features.
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Working in Google Docs, thoughts like “who can write my essays cheap” will never pop up in your head. Now, let’s take a closer look at dealing with any paper in the app.

Writing an essay in Google Docs: Tips you should know

Creating the Document

The fastest way to create a Google Doc is to launch your Chrome browser and click the upper right icon called Google Apps. Upon clicking on it, you will see a drop-down menu. Scroll a bit down to see the Google Docs icon. Press it and wait until it gets you to a new window. Once it’s done, you will be on the Google Docs main screen. Now, click on the icon placed under the words Start a new document. Doing that will create a blank document.

Choosing font

A new document is typically raw, meaning it doesn’t have the required font, format, etc. You can set the mentioned in two ways. First, you can use a premade template to save you some time writing a paper. Google Docs comprises a comprehensive library of templates that encompass letters, resumes, brochures, and, of course, essays. To select the template, open a blank document, choose Files, press New, and select From Template. You should see a list of formats, like MLA, APA, Harvard, and Chicago there.

Secondly, you can set the format manually. Now, you might ask why you should do that since free templates are available on the app. See, the problem is, these templates might not meet the requirements set by your academic institution. So it may be better to create a blank paper and adjust it to your college’s instructions. And the first thing to do is choose a font. Times New Roman 12 is a widely accepted font in essay writing. To set it up, click the font drop-down menu at the top of the page and replace Arial with Times New Roman. Once you do that, click the font size drop-down menu and select 12. Alternatively, you can do that by using a shortcut Ctrl + Shift + period.

  • Note: Remember to double-check the instructions regarding the paper’s format. Should they be unique, you will have to choose Page setup and tailor the margins and size to the instructions. Otherwise, you can leave it as is and start working on your paper.
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Building a title page

The look of your title page highly depends on the formatting style you follow. For instance, suppose it’s Modern Language Association (MLA). In that case, your title page should contain the following information:

  • Last name in the header along with a page number
  • First and last name
  • Professor’s name
  • Course and its number
  • Date
  • The topic of an essay

Drafting the piece

The most effective way to complete the essay fast is to start writing it without following the format. Draft your paper, focusing on the quality of content, not formalities. You will deal with mistakes later.

Keeping in mind hanging indent

Whatever citation style you follow, the last page (Works Cited in MLA and References in APA) should have a specific indentation. Click Insert and choose Page Break to create a new page for the references. Add works alphabetically, select them, click on the blue triangle located on the ruler, and slide it over to the .5 tick. Your references will be messed up, but don’t worry; it’s how they should be for now. Click on the line over the triangle, and slide it back to the initial position. Your references should be formatted correctly.

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Quick tips to make a writing session productive

Google Docs is an excellent app for essay writing. Apart from its simple design and intuitive menus, it has a dozen of remarkable and valuable features that can boost your efficiency. They will allow you to write an essay in different and unorthodox conditions.

Recording yourself

With technological development, you no longer have to use your fingers to type an essay. Just like you record voice messages, you can record an essay when on the go. It might be an excellent way to use the time commuting to school.

Using shortcuts

Using shortcuts is another excellent way to boost effectiveness. It can reduce your time working on the task. These shortcuts might come in handy:

  • Ctrl + Alt + m: Adds comment;
  • Ctrl + Alt + y: Runs dictionary;
  • Ctrl + /: Clears formatting.

Working offline

Lastly, Google Docs lets you work on your papers without having an Internet connection. Just make it available offline in advance, and the app will sync the progress once your Internet is restored.

Google Docs is arguably the best app for essay writing. Other than available templates, it has several features that make the application stand out. Make Google Docs your preferred app, and your productivity will skyrocket.


  1. tepkijn February 23, 2023
  2. Sochima March 2, 2023

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