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APA FAQ

What is APA style?

This is a format for citing sources and typing research papers in the social sciences developed by the American Psychological Association (APA), described fully in the most recent edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.

What is the format for APA style?

The general format for APA style is typed, double-spaced on standard-sized paper (8.5 X 11 inches) with margins of 1 inch on all sides. Your final product may include the following, if applicable:

  • Title page: includes a running head for publication, title, and byline and affiliation.
  • Page numbers and running head: in the upper right-hand corner of each page, include a 1-2 word version of your title. Follow with five spaces and then the page number.
  • Abstract: If your instructor requires an abstract, write a 75-100 word overview of your essay, which should include your main idea and your major points. You also may want to mention any implications of your research. Place the abstract on its own page immediately after the title page. Center the word Abstract and then follow with the paragraph.
    Headings: Although not absolutely necessary, headings can be helpful. For undergraduate papers, only one level of heading is necessary. Major headings should be centered. Capitalize every word in the heading except articles (a, the), short prepositions (in, by, for), and coordinating conjunctions (and, but, or).
  • Visuals: Visuals such as tables and figures include graphs, charts, drawings, and photographs. Try to keep the visuals as simple as possible and clearly label each visual with an Arabic numeral (ex: Table 1, Table 2, etc.) and include the title of the visual. The label and the title should appear on separate lines above the table, flush left. Below the table, provide the source.
  • List of References: Create your list of references on its own page after the last page of your text. Center the title References one inch from the top of the page. Double space. Alphabetize the list of references by the last name of the authors. If the work has no author or editor, alphabetize the work by the first word of the title (excluding A, An, or The).

Where can I get help with my citations and references?

The Center for Teaching and Learning can help you with any of your writing needs. There are also many books and websites available that offer examples on how to cite multiple sources.   One website that is particularly helpful is www.citationmachine.net .

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