1 Running head: SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 1 RUNNING HEAD: Yes, it will say, Running head:...., but only on the first page. Use an abbreviated form of the title (not exceeding 50 characters, which will include spaces). The abbreviated title is in capital letters. This will appear in the top left corner 1 inch from the left margin and ½ inch from the top. The all-caps title will appear on all subsequent pages in the top left-hand corner. All elements in the dotted boxes are not visible on your final paper. 1 in. Margin. All written material is within 1in. margins around all sides of the page, on every page. Only the header is outside the 1 in. margin. PAGE NUMBERS: A page number will appear on every page in the top right corner of every page 1 inch from the right margin and ½ inch from the top. 1 in. Margin. Essay title. Try to keep it under 12 words in length and avoid using abbreviations. Sample APA Paper for Students Learning APA Style Your Name The Name of the Course Your Instructor s Name The Date NOTE: Information that is required varies from class to class consult your instructor for which details are required. This information is centered (left to right), double spaced, and can start in the upper half of the page. 1 in. Margin. Revised October 2009 LIBRARY SERVICES Service above and beyond 1 in. Margin. NOTE: This paper is printed doublesided to save paper. A proper APA paper should not be double-sided.
2 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 2 Abstract Section title. You may not have to include an abstract with your paper; if in doubt, ask your instructor. The abstract is a single paragraph in block format (without paragraph indentation) and should be between 150 and 250 words. Be sure to understand the difference between the abstract (a summary of the paper) and the introduction (an introduction to the paper). A good trick is to write one summary sentence for each major part of your paper; which should leave you with a good, four-sentence abstract. See section 2.04 of the 6th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association for additional information. Medicine Hat College Library Services has several copies of the manual available in the Vera Bracken Library; one at the Information Desk, one in the Reference Collection, and two in the Circulating Collection. The Brooks Campus Library will have two copies one in each of the Circulating and Reference Collections. The call number for both the circulating and reference copies is BF 76.7 P In all cases, only books in the Circulating Collection can be checked-out. NOTE. 1. The abstract is not indented like regular paragraphs. 2. Read more about abstracts and the use of abbreviations in sections: 2.04 (pp ) and (pp ) of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.).
3 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 3 Sample APA Paper for Students Learning APA Style Essay s title. The first part of your paper is the introduction. Head this section with the title of your paper; do not use the heading Introduction. This part of your paper develops the background, and states the purpose and rationale of the paper, and answers the question, What is the point of this paper? At the end of your introduction include a sentence stating the purpose of your research (your thesis statement). Section 2.05 of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA Publication Manual) will give you more information on writing your introduction. This Paper is Only a Guide Use this paper as a guide only; if anything in this paper is different from the instructions provided by your instructor, always do as your instructor asks. If in doubt, ask your instructor. For more help on writing and formatting your paper, go to Writing in College: A Short Guide to College Writing, at This website provides information on every aspect of college writing. We also carry many books in the library that will help in your writing. Basic APA Format Your APA paper should: (a) be double-spaced on every page; (b) have 2.54 cm (1 inch) wide margins on all four sides top, bottom, left, and right; (c) have one space after each comma, semicolon, and colon; (d) two spaces after sentence periods; and (e) have headings if it is more than a few pages in length. The Body of Your Paper The middle part of your paper is where you make the main points of your argument. The points you want to make may be clear to you, but that is not always the case for the reader.
4 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 4 Paragraphs and headings work together to help you get your ideas across to the reader as clearly as possible (Audi, 1999). Paragraphs Level 2 heading. Paragraphs help you change from one idea to another in your paper. Aim to make one point or present one piece of information in each paragraph. It is recommended that you break the document into short... paragraphs to make it easier to read (Kennedy, 2004, p. 23). Headings Level 2 heading. Headings organize the hierarchy of ideas in your paper. By employing headings, you give your reader visual cues about the importance of the information that is to follow. Headings can be especially useful when explaining processes step-by-step. You can have one or more levels of headings in your paper; all ideas of equal importance will have the same level of heading. The longer your paper, the more levels of headings you will have. For a detailed explanation of headings (including how to format headings when you have more than three levels), see section 3.03 of the APA Publication Manual. This paper uses three levels of headings; refer to Table 1 to find out how to format them. Figures and Tables Figures refer to any illustration (e.g., chart, graph, illustration, photograph, etc.) that you employ in your essay. Tables refer to any numeric or textual information that conveys data in an efficient and comprehensible arrangement through the use of rows and columns (American Psychological Association [APA], 2010). Figures and tables will not be integrated into the text of an essay; they will be placed after the references page, but before any appendices with any tables preceding figures. Each figure and table will be presented on its own page. Refer to Figure 1 and Table 1 for examples of how you might format each. Figures and tables can also be
5 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 5 employed in appendices for certain cases. The Appendix The appendix is a useful tool to provide your readers with supplemental information, which can be in the form of figures, tables, or text. The appendix will be placed after any reference, figure, and table pages. You are allowed to have more than one appendix, which will be arranged in the order that they are referred to in the paper. Each appendix will be titled Appendix. If you have more than one appendix, they will be given an alphabetical designation (e.g., Appendix A, Appendix B, etc.). Each appendix will have a title, double-spaced, below the page heading. Refer to the table in the Appendix of this guide for more information about where to locate information on various topics in the APA Publication Manual. It should be noted that the table in the appendix does not have a label or number attached to it; because it is a single standalone table in an appendix, no alphanumeric designation is required. Referencing Research Material A major component in any academic paper is the citation of information that you incorporated into your essay from materials found in the research process. Failure to give recognition to that source material is plagiarism. Heffernan, Lincoln, and Atwill (2001) state that: Use a ½ in. indent for block quote. Example of a block quotation see section 6.03 (p.171) of APA Publication Manual. Plagiarism occurs if you are presenting the words or thoughts of another writer as if they were your own. When you submit a paper that is wholly or partly plagiarized, you are taking credit... for work done by someone else. This is fundamentally dishonest and therefore wrong. (p. 571) If you are caught plagiarizing, the academic consequences could include failure of your class, or expulsion from your program or institution.
6 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 6 You will need to cite information when you (a) quote (use another source word-forword), (b) paraphrase another person s ideas or words, and (c) employ a little known fact or idea that is not common knowledge (Citing Information, n.d.). Even though you use your own words when paraphrasing, the concepts are still borrowed and require citation. Citing Sources Level 2 heading. There are two major components required in order to avoid charges of plagiarism. The two things required are an in-text citation and a reference page citation. You are required to provide both pieces of data when you paraphrase or quote other writer s ideas or words. Level 3 heading. In-text citation. The in-text citation is a visual cue that accompanies borrowed words and ideas. Immediately following the paraphrase or quote, include: the author s surname, the source s copyright date, and the page number from which the information was taken in parenthesis. This cue informs your reader that information was borrowed, and they your reader can refer to the reference page for detailed bibliographic information on the source. Page numbers are not necessary when paraphrasing, but they are still recommended. Level 3 heading. Reference page citation. Immediately following the text of your essay, you will have your reference page. The reference page includes detailed bibliographic information about material that allows readers to verify information for themselves. Conclusion A conclusion adds order and emphasis to your paper; it should pull the different parts of the paper together, emphasizes important points, and demonstrates the possibilities for future exploration of your topic. Although the conclusion should include a restatement of your thesis, it should not simply restate the points you made in your paper; the conclusion should add to the reader s understanding of the issues as well as clarify your argument.
7 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 7 References Section title. American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological ½ in. hanging indent. Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. Audi, R. (Ed.). (1999). Making paragraphs that work. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. Citing information. (n.d.). Retrieved from Citing.htm Heffernam, J. A. W., Lincoln, J. E., & Atwill, J. (2001). Writing: A college handbook: Instructor s edition (5th ed.). New York, NY: W. W. Norton. Kennedy, P. M. (2004). Technical writing tips. Tech Directions, 64(4), Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database. (Accession No ) NOTE. 1. The references are in alphabetical order by author s last name (if there is no author then the title of the reference is used instead). 2. The title of the page is References. 3. The reference page is on a separate page from the rest of the text. 4. Each citation employs a hanging indent, which means the first line is flush against the left margin and each subsequent line per citation is indented by 5 7 spaces or ½ inch. To create a hanging indent in Word 2007, perform the following steps (Note. There are other ways to do this): a. Type your citations as normal and select/highlight them all. b. Right-click on the selection with your mouse and select Paragraphs... from the contextual menu. c. Setup the Indentation section as illustrated: d. Click OK to complete. e. Be sure that the first line is flush and that all lines are double-spaced. For more details on formatting references see the APA Style Guide that is available in the library or on the Web site at:
8 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 8 Table 1 Table label. Orientation of Headings Employed in a 5 Heading Essay Table title is italicized. Heading Level Format Centered, Boldface, Uppercase and Lowercase Heading a 1 Your paragraph will start on the next subsequent line. The double spacing rules are still applied here, as they are with other headings. 2 Flush Left, Boldface, Uppercase and Lowercase Heading Your paragraph will start on the next subsequent line. Indented, boldface, at the beginning of a paragraph, with only the 3 first word capitalized and it ends in a period. b Your paragraph starts immediately after the heading. 4 Indented, boldface, italicized, with only the first word capitalized and it ends in a period. Your paragraph starts immediately after the heading. 5 Indented, italicized, with only the first word capitalized and it ends in a period. Your paragraph starts immediately after the heading. Note. From Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed., pp ), 2010, Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. Copyrighted 2010 by American Psychological Association. This is an example of a general note. a This type of heading employs what is also known as title case. b This type of heading employs what is also known as sentence case. The a and b are specific notes for the table. Probability notes are a third type they are not displayed here. NOTE. 1. Refer to section 5.16 (p. pp ) of the APA Publication Manual for elements of a table note. 2. Content of a table can be single spaced it was left double spaced here to demonstrate relationships between each heading and its associated content. 3. The table note will be double spaced.
9 Time SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 9 Comprehension 0 Comprehension Figure 1. Student comprehension of the APA citation method over time. Although this chart is facetious in nature, it is meant to illustrate that comprehension of the APA method of documentation is attainable as it is used over time. NOTE. 1. The figure label is italicized and employs an Arabic numeral. 2. The caption is double spaced. 3. The text following the label acts as both explanation and title of the figure. 4. The figure will be centered on the page. 5. In your essay, you would simply refer to the figure by writing: Refer to Figure 1 for an illustration of It is advisable/permissible to use a sans serif font (e.g., Arial, Futura, Helvetica, etc.) between 8 and 14 points in size for figures. 7. For complete details on the formatting of figures, refer to sections (pp ) of the APA Publication Manual.
10 SAMPLE APA PAPER FOR STUDENTS 10 Since there is no text and only one table in this appendix, then the label of Table A1 is not required. Appendix Section title. If there is more than one appendix, then they would be Appendix A, Appendix B, etc. Often-Referenced Pages from the APA s Publication Manual Appendix title. Subject Section(s) Page(s) 1. Appendixes 2.06, 2.13, 5.04, , 38 40, 127, Figures General Formatting Rules Headings , , Numbers Personal Communication 6.20, , Quotations Reference Citations in Text Reference List Sample Paper Figures Secondary Sources Seriation Spacing and Punctuation 4.01, , Tables Note. The information provided in this table is specific to the 6th edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. NOTE. 1. Appendices can be figures, tables, or text. 2. The note is double spaced, but content of a table can be single or double spaced. 3. Multiple appendices are ordered in the same order that they are mentioned in the essay. 4. The appendix title is below the section title. It is centered, using title case. 5. This table constitutes the entire appendix, therefore the section label and title serve in place of it being designated Table A1. A table title is not required here, because there is no introductory text to the table, and therefore the appendix s title doubles for the table title. 6. If more tables were in this appendix, then this one would be designated Table A1, and subsequent ones as: Table A2, Table A3, etc. Tables in other appendixes would be given an alphanumeric designation depending on which appendix it appeared in (e.g., Table B1 [in Appendix B], Table C1 [in Appendix C], etc.). 7. Refer to section 2.13 (pp ) of the APA Publication Manual for more details.
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