Acronyms and abbreviations must be spelled out downright on initial appearance in text.

Use only if abbreviation is conventional, is apt to be familiar, will save considerable space, and will prevent cumbersome repetition.

Avoid beginning a sentence with an acronym or an abbreviation.

For further information, see pages 111-114 in the Publication Manual.

APA rules for capitalization state:

Capitalize all words of four letters or more in titles of books and articles in text.

Do not capitalize names of laws, theories, and hypotheses except for decent nouns.

For more information, see pages 101-104 in the Publication Manual.

Hyphenation

APA rules for hyphenation state:

For compound words not in the dictionary, use hyphens for clarity rather than omit them.

Hyphenate compound adjectives that precede the noun they modify:

  • role-playing mechanism
  • two-way analysis
  • middle-class families
  • Do not hyphenate a compound adjective if its meaning is established or it cannot be misread:
  • grade point average
  • lovemaking role difference
  • For more information, see pages 97-100 in the Publication Manual.

    Numbers

    APA rules for numbers state:

    Use figures for numbers Ten and above (12 of the subjects); for numbers above and below Ten grouped for comparison (Two of 16 responses); for numbers signifying time, dates, and age (Three years ago, Two hr 15 min); for numbers denoting a specific place in a series, book, or table (Table Three, Group Three, page 32).

    Use words for numbers below Ten that do not represent precise measurements (eight items, nine pages); for numbers beginning a sentence, title, or heading (Forty-eight percent responded; Ten subjects improved, and Four subjects did not.).

    See pages 99-105 in the Publication Manual.

    Quotations

    APA rules for quotations state:

    Incorporate quotations of less than 40 words in the text with dual quotation marks.

    Place quotations of 40 or more words in a double-spaced block, indented five spaces from left margin. Do not use quotation marks with a blocked quotation.

    If quoting more than one paragraph, indent the very first line of each paragraph five extra spaces from the left margin (for a total of ten spaces).

    A page number always instantly goes after a quotation, even when the author and date precede it: Lu (1990) found that “several hypotheses were partially supported” (page 48).

    See pages 170-171 in the Publication Manual .

    Last updated: March 6, 2017

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    Acronyms and abbreviations must be spelled out fully on initial appearance in text.

    Use only if abbreviation is conventional, is apt to be familiar, will save considerable space, and will prevent cumbersome repetition.

    A quick orientation to APA

    Like all documentation styles, APA style provides a standard system for providing credit to others for their contribution to your work. It’s what we call a “parenthetical” documentation style, meaning that citations to original sources emerge in your text. This permits the reader to see instantly where your information comes from, and it saves you the trouble of having to make footnotes or endnotes.

    The APA style calls for three kinds of information to be included in in-text citations. The author’s last name and the work’s date of publication must always emerge, and these items must match exactly the corresponding entry in the references list. The third kind of information, the page number, shows up only in a citation to a direct quotation.

    The APA style includes guidelines for the formatting of documents. The most significant aspects of these guidelines for most academic writing are the formatting of the reference list and headings. When applying APA style to these elements, it is significant to reminisce that the intent of the Publication Manual is to assist the editorial staff of APA journals in typesetting. If you are preparing a paper for a class assignment rather than a journal, you are in a sense publishing it yourself. Consult your instructor or advisor for specific course requirements.

    APA style is primarily used in the social sciences, so if you’re taking a psychology or sociology course, chances are you’ll be expected to write papers in APA style. Your instructor will let you know whether you need to use APA style for your papers.

    What do I indeed need to know?

    In any paper that refers to other sources, you MUST cite these sources decently. Failure to do so could result in charges of plagiarism by your instructor.

    Very first, determine what types of sources you have, whether they’re journal articles, books, or interviews. Then use these pages to learn how to cite them within the bod of your paper using APA parenthetical citations and also how to create an APA reference list.

    Once you’ve cited everything decently, refer to the APA Headings and APA Formatting pages to find out how to make your paper visualy conform to APA guidelines.

    Eventually, if you’re writing a paper in APA style for a course, keep in mind that instructors may have specific guidelines of their own. When in doubt whether to use a particular aspect of APA style, always ask your instructor to clarify.

    APA Headings

    All APA formatted documents use headings that showcase your readers how your paper is organized by labeling the parts and by indicating which parts are identically significant and which are subordinate to others .

    For a finish treatment of the politics of headings, take a look at the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. sixth edition (2010), pages 62-63.

    Level 1 Headings

    Most undergraduate papers often use only Level 1 headings, which are:

  • centered
  • boldface
  • uppercase and lowercase
  • Level One Heading

    text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text

    Level 1 and Two Headings

    Slightly more complicated undergraduate papers often use Level 1 and Level Two headings.

    Level Two headings are:

  • flush left
  • Level Two Heading

    Level 1, Two, and Three Headings

    Papers that are long or that have many subsections often use Level 1. Level Two. and Level Three headings.

    Level Trio headings are:

  • indented
  • sentence case (only 1st letter capitalized)
  • followed by a period, and then instantly by text
  • Level three heading. text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text

    Level 1, Two, Three, and Four Headings

    Multiexperiment studies, monographs, and lengthy literature reviews often require Level 1. Level Two. Level Three. and Level Four headings.

    Level Four headings are:

    Level four heading. text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text

    Level 1, Two, Three, Four, and Five Headings

    Level Five headings are:

  • italicized
  • Level five heading. text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text text

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