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Concise Guide to APA Style
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Table of Contents

  • 1. Student Paper Types, Elements, and Format
  • General Guidelines for Student Papers
  • 1.1 Application of APA Style to Student Papers
  • 1.2 Student Essays
  • 1.3 Annotated Bibliographies
  • 1.4 Dissertations and Theses
  • 1.5 Student Paper Required Elements
  • Paper Elements
  • 1.6 Title Page
  • 1.7 Title
  • 1.8 Author Name (Byline)
  • 1.9 Author Affiliation
  • 1.10 Abstract
  • 1.11 Text (Body)
  • 1.12 Reference List
  • 1.13 Footnotes
  • 1.14 Appendices
  • Format
  • 1.15 Importance of Format
  • 1.16 Order of Pages
  • 1.17 Page Header
  • 1.18 Font
  • 1.19 Special Characters
  • 1.20 Line Spacing
  • 1.21 Margins
  • 1.22 Paragraph Alignment
  • 1.23 Paragraph Indentation
  • 1.24 Paper Length
  • Organization
  • 1.25 Principles of Organization
  • 1.26 Heading Levels
  • 1.27 Section Labels
  • Sample Student Paper
  • 2. Writing Style and Grammar
  • Effective Scholarly Writing
  • 2.1 Continuity and Flow
  • 2.2 Transitions
  • 2.3 Noun Strings
  • 2.4 Conciseness and Clarity
  • 2.5 Wordiness and Redundancy
  • 2.6 Sentence and Paragraph Length
  • 2.7 Tone
  • 2.8 Contractions and Colloquialisms
  • 2.9 Jargon
  • 2.10 Logical Comparisons
  • 2.11 Anthropomorphism
  • Grammar and Usage
  • 2.12 Verb Tense
  • 2.13 Active and Passive Voice
  • 2.14 Mood
  • 2.15 Subject and Verb Agreement
  • 2.16 First- Versus Third-Person Pronouns
  • 2.17 Editorial 'We'
  • 2.18 Singular 'They'
  • 2.19 Pronouns for People and Animals ('Who' vs. 'That')
  • 2.20 Pronouns as Subjects and Objects ('Who vs. Whom')
  • 2.21 Pronouns in Restrictive and Nonrestrictive Clauses ('That' vs. 'Which')
  • 2.22 Subordinate Conjunctions
  • 2.23 Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers
  • 2.24 Parallel Construction
  • Strategies to Improve Your Writing
  • 2.25 Reading to Learn Through Example
  • 2.26 Writing From an Outline
  • 2.27 Rereading the Draft
  • 2.28 Seeking Help From Fellow Students
  • 2.29 Working With Writing Centers
  • 2.30 Revising a Paper
  • 3. Bias-Free Language Guidelines
  • General Guidelines for Reducing Bias
  • 3.1 Describe at the Appropriate Level of Specificity
  • 3.2 Be Sensitive to Labels
  • Reducing Bias by Topic
  • 3.3 Age
  • 3.4 Disability
  • 3.5 Gender
  • 3.6 Participation in Research
  • 3.7 Racial and Ethnic Identity
  • 3.8 Sexual Orientation
  • 3.9 Socioeconomic Status
  • 3.10 Intersectionality
  • 4. Punctuation, Lists, and Italics
  • Punctuation
  • 4.1 Spacing After Punctuation Marks
  • 4.2 Period
  • 4.3 Comma
  • 4.4 Semicolon
  • 4.5 Colon
  • 4.6 Dash
  • 4.7 Quotation Marks
  • 4.8 Parentheses
  • 4.9 Square Brackets
  • 4.10 Slash
  • Lists
  • 4.11 List Guidelines
  • 4.12 Lettered Lists
  • 4.13 Numbered Lists
  • 4.14 Bulleted Lists
  • Italics
  • 4.15 Use of Italics
  • 4.16 Reverse Italics
  • 5. Spelling, Capitalization, and Abbreviations
  • Spelling
  • 5.1 Preferred Spelling
  • 5.2 Hyphenation
  • Capitalization
  • 5.3 Words Beginning a Sentence
  • 5.4 Proper Nouns and Trade Names
  • 5.5 Job Titles and Positions
  • 5.6 Diseases, Disorders, Therapies, Theories, and Related Terms
  • 5.7 Titles of Works and Headings Within Works
  • 5.8 Titles of Tests and Measures
  • 5.9 Nouns Followed by Numerals or Letters
  • 5.10 Names of Conditions or Groups in an Experiment
  • 5.11 Names of Factors, Variables, and Effects
  • Abbreviations
  • 5.12 Use of Abbreviations
  • 5.13 Definition of Abbreviations
  • 5.14 Format of Abbreviations
  • 5.15 Unit of Measurement Abbreviations
  • 5.16 Time Abbreviations
  • 5.17 Latin Abbreviations
  • 5.18 Chemical Compound Abbreviations
  • 6. Numbers and Statistics
  • Numbers
  • 6.1 Numbers Expressed in Numerals
  • 6.2 Numbers Expressed in Words
  • 6.3 Combining Numerals and Words to Express Numbers
  • 6.4 Ordinal Numbers
  • 6.5 Decimal Fractions
  • 6.6 Roman Numerals
  • 6.7 Commas in Numbers
  • 6.8 Plurals of Numbers
  • Statistics and Equations
  • 6.9 Presentation of Statistics
  • 6.10 Statistical Symbols and Abbreviations
  • 6.11 Spacing, Alignment, and Punctuation for Statistics
  • 6.12 Presentation of Equations
  • 7. Tables and Figures
  • General Guidelines for Tables and Figures
  • 7.1 Purpose of Tables and Figures
  • 7.2 Design and Preparation of Tables and Figures
  • 7.3 Graphical Versus Textual Presentation
  • 7.4 Formatting Tables and Figures
  • 7.5 Referring to Tables and Figures in the Text
  • 7.6 Placement of Tables and Figures
  • 7.7 Reprinting or Adapting Tables and Figures
  • Tables
  • 7.8 Principles of Table Construction
  • 7.9 Table Components
  • 7.10 Table Numbers
  • 7.11 Table Titles
  • 7.12 Table Headings
  • 7.13 Table Body
  • 7.14 Table Notes
  • 7.15 Standard Abbreviations in Tables and Figures
  • 7.16 Confidence Intervals in Tables
  • 7.17 Table Borders and Shading
  • 7.18 Long or Wide Tables
  • 7.19 Relation Between Tables
  • 7.20 Table Checklist
  • 7.21 Sample Tables
  • Figures
  • 7.22 Principles of Figure Construction
  • 7.23 Figure Components
  • 7.24 Figure Numbers
  • 7.25 Figure Titles
  • 7.26 Figure Images
  • 7.27 Figure Legends
  • 7.28 Figure Notes
  • 7.29 Relation Between Figures
  • 7.30 Photographs
  • 7.31 Figure Checklist
  • 7.32 Sample Figures

    8. Works Credited in the Text
  • General Guidelines for Citation
  • 8.1 Appropriate Level of Citation
  • 8.2 Plagiarism
  • 8.3 Self-Plagiarism
  • 8.4 Correspondence Between Reference List and Text
  • 8.5 Use of the Published Version or Archival Version
  • 8.6 Primary and Secondary Sources
  • Works Requiring Special Approaches
  • 8.7 Interviews
  • 8.8 Classroom or Intranet Sources
  • 8.9 Personal Communications
  • In-Text Citations
  • 8.10 Author Date Citation System
  • 8.11 Parenthetical and Narrative Citations
  • 8.12 Citing Multiple Works
  • 8.13 Citing Specific Parts of a Source
  • 8.14 Unknown or Anonymous Author
  • 8.15 Translated, Reprinted, Republished, and Reissued Dates
  • 8.16 Omitting the Year in Repeated Narrative Citations
  • 8.17 Number of Authors to Include in In-Text Citations
  • 8.18 Avoiding Ambiguity in In-Text Citations
  • 8.19 Works With the Same Author and Same Date
  • 8.20 Authors With the Same Surname
  • 8.21 Abbreviating Group Authors
  • 8.22 General Mentions of Websites, Periodicals, and Common Software and Apps
  • Paraphrases and Quotations
  • 8.23 Principles of Paraphrasing
  • 8.24 Long Paraphrases
  • 8.25 Principles of Direct Quotation
  • 8.26 Short Quotations (Fewer Than 40 Words)
  • 8.27 Block Quotations (40 Words or More)
  • 8.28 Direct Quotation of Material Without Page Numbers
  • 8.29 Accuracy of Quotations
  • 8.30 Changes to a Quotation Requiring No Explanation
  • 8.31 Changes to a Quotation Requiring Explanation
  • 8.32 Quotations That Contain Citations to Other Works
  • 8.33 Quotations That Contain Material Already in Quotation Marks
  • 8.34 Epigraphs
  • Copyright and Permission
  • 8.35 General Guidelines for Reprinting or Adapting Materials
  • 8.36 Materials That Require a Copyright Attribution
  • 8.37 Copyright Status
  • 8.38 Permission and Fair Use
  • 8.39 Copyright Attribution Formats
  • 9. Reference List
  • Reference Categories
  • 9.1 Determining the Reference Category
  • 9.2 Using the Webpages and Websites Reference Category
  • 9.3 Online and Print References
  • Principles of Reference List Entries
  • 9.4 Four Elements of a Reference
  • 9.5 Punctuation Within Reference List Entries
  • 9.6 Accuracy and Consistency in References
  • Reference Elements (Author, Date, Title, Source)
  • 9.7 Author Element
  • 9.8 Format of the Author Element
  • 9.9 Spelling and Capitalization of Author Names
  • 9.10 Identification of Specialized Roles
  • 9.11 Group Authors
  • 9.12 No Author
  • 9.13 Date Element
  • 9.14 Format of the Date Element
  • 9.15 Updated or Reviewed Online Works
  • 9.16 Retrieval Dates
  • 9.17 No Date
  • 9.18 Title Element
  • 9.19 Format of the Title Element
  • 9.20 Series and Multivolume Works
  • 9.21 Bracketed Descriptions
  • 9.22 No Title
  • 9.23 Source Element
  • 9.24 Format of the Source Element
  • 9.25 Periodical Sources
  • 9.26 Online Periodicals With Missing Information
  • 9.27 Article Numbers
  • 9.28 Edited Book Chapter and Reference Work Entry Sources
  • 9.29 Publisher Sources
  • 9.30 Database and Archive Sources
  • 9.31 Works With Specific Locations
  • 9.32 Social Media Sources
  • 9.33 Website Sources
  • 9.34 When to Include DOIs and URLs
  • 9.35 Format of DOIs and URLs
  • 9.36 DOI or URL Shorteners
  • 9.37 No Source
  • Reference Variations
  • 9.38 Works in Another Language
  • 9.39 Translated Works
  • 9.40 Reprinted, Republished, or Reissued Works
  • 9.41 Religious and Classical Works
  • Reference List Format and Order
  • 9.42 Format of the Reference List
  • 9.43 Order of Works in the Reference List
  • 9.44 Order of Surname and Given Name
  • 9.45 Order of Multiple Works by the Same First Author
  • 9.46 Order of Works With the Same Author and Same Date
  • 9.47 Order of Works by First Authors With the Same Surname
  • 9.48 Order of Works With No Author or an Anonymous Author
  • 9.49 Abbreviations in References
  • 10. Reference Examples
  • Author Variations
  • Date Variations
  • Title Variations
  • Source Variations
  • Textual Works
  • 10.1 Periodicals
  • 10.2 Books and Reference Works
  • 10.3 Edited Book Chapters and Entries in Reference Works
  • 10.4 Reports and Gray Literature
  • 10.5 Dissertations and Theses
  • 10.6 Reviews
  • 10.7 Informally Published Works
  • Software and Tests
  • 10.13 Social Media
  • 10.14 Webpages and Websites
  • Legal References
  • 10.15 Cases or Court Decisions
  • 10.16 Statutes (Laws and Acts)
  • 10.17 Constitutions and Charters
  • 10.18 Treaties and International Conventions

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