The name Paula is a girl's name of Portuguese origin meaning "small". Paula is ranked #847 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Feminizations and discussed in our forums with posts like "ALPHABET Drop 2 Add 1 - Girls".
From the experts:
Paula still seems somewhat stuck in the era of duo Paul and Paula bopping out the song "Hey, Paula." Two pronunciations are possible—the English "PAW-la" and the Portuguese "POW-la."
Modern bearers of the name include singer-songwriter Paula Abdul and comedian Paula Poundstone, as well as a character on My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.