APA Style Quick GuideAPA Style is frequently used as a reference style for sources in social sciences. The following is a quick guide to APA Style. Use this guide as an overview as well as a checklist for academic papers or research journal publications.
If you require more detail, please refer to the APA Style Manual, 6th ed.; this is the most current edition at the time of publication for this quick guide.
1. Use Times New Roman 12-point font.
2. Double space all content to include the title page information, Abstract, body, and References.
3. Use two spaces after every period. APA recommends this formatting detail in order to assist in the readability of the text.
4. A title page and an Abstract are required unless otherwise noted.
1. The title page should include three lines of text: the paper's title (first line of text), the author's first and last name (second line of text), and institutional affiliation (third line of text). This information should appear centered on the top one-third of the page and use 12-point Times New Roman Font.
2. The title page should include the words "Running head: PAPER'S TITLE" in the upper left-hand header of the title page. Notice the capitalization of the paper's title.
3. The page number should appear in the upper right-hand corner of the title page in the header. The page number should start with "1."
4. The paper's subsequent pages (to include the Abstract and References) must have "PAPER's TITLE" in the left-hand header. Note that the words "Running head:" are removed. Page numbers should continue sequentially throughout the remainder of the paper.
1. As a short summary of the paper, the Abstract introduces readers to the paper's purpose and primary areas of focus.
2. The length of the Abstract should be between 150 and 250 words. If any abbreviations or acronyms are utilized in the paper, these terms must be defined in the Abstract.
3. The Abstract should begin on a new page, and the word "Abstract" should be centered. The first line of the Abstract paragraph is not indented.
4. The Abstract must include keywords after the text of the Abstract. Indent the word "Keywords:" one-half inch. Notice that "Keywords:" is placed in italics and is followed by a colon. Separate keywords by commas.
1. The proper format of an in-text citation for APA Style is as follows: (Last Name of Author, Publication Year, p. #).
2. For a source which has three to five authors, list all authors' names for the first in-text citation of the source used in the paper. Then, the first author’s last name followed by "et al." may be used for subsequent citations.
3. For a source which has six or more authors, "et al." may be used for all in-text citations of the paper.
1. The reference list should begin on a new page, and the word "References" should be centered. Entries should be alphabetized.
2. All sources which have an in-text citation in the body of the paper must also have a corresponding listing in the References.
3. All lines of text after the first line of text for each entry should be indented one-half inch from the left margin. This is otherwise known as hanging indentation.
Need additional help for APA Style? The following are a few resources:
APA Style Manual
APA Sample Paper from Purdue Owl
PaperFixr.com's Editing Service
et al. Usage
MLA Style Basics