Changing the left margin is a bit risky since most papers are left-justified, meaning that the left edge will be relatively the same for all papers.
The right margin, however, can be changed to your heart’s content, since the length of words, number of letters, and number of spaces greatly affect each line’s right edge.
But what happens when you have 4 and a half pages done of your five page essay?
There are plenty of writing techniques to flesh ideas out and make it longer, but I’m assuming that your essay is perfect as it is and you want a more technological answer.
Below is a picture of the word “Hello” printed four times, each at size 12.
The fonts, from left to right, are “Angsana New”, “Calibri”, “Times New Roman”, and “Algerian”.
It’s somewhat difficult to make demands on essays for students – demanding that they have 500 words, for example, leads to really, really, very, extremely superfluous lists of adjectives and describing words like this sentence to up the word count.
Other teachers use the page count as a metric of completion.
So, for every ten lines you actually write, you get the effect of having written eleven instead.
For an essay that’s 4.5 pages, this tiny change can easily bring you over the 5 page mark and is virtually undetectable.