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Research report writing in apa format

Jun 6, 2018

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If you are taking a psychology class, it is very likely that your instructor will ask you to write an APA paper at some point. What exactly is an APA paper? It is simply a written paper that follows APA format, the official writing format of the American Psychological Association.

If you’ve never written an APA paper before, the formatting rules and guidelines can seem daunting and difficult at first.

You might be used to writing papers in another format such as MLA or Chicago style, so it might take some time to get the hang of writing in APA format.

While your instructor may have other specific formatting requirements for you to follow, here are some general guidelines for how to write an APA paper.

General Rules for an APA Style Paper

First, start by observing some of the standard rules of APA format. Use standard-sized paper of 8.5 inches by 11 inches, and always use a 1-inch margin on all sides.

Your paper should always be typed, double-spaced and in a 12-point font. Times New Roman is one recommended font to use, but you may also use similar fonts.

Every page of your paper should also include a page header on the top left of the page as well as a page number on the top right of the page.

Sections of an APA Paper

The exact structure of your paper will vary somewhat depending upon the type of paper you have been asked to write.

For example, a lab report might be structured a bit differently that a case study or critique paper. A lab report will include extra sections details the method, results, and discussion related to your experiment or study.

No matter what type of APA paper you are writing, there should be four key sections that you should always include: a title page, an abstract, the main body of the paper and a reference section.

Final Tips for Writing an APA Paper

While writing an APA paper may seem difficult or confusing, start by breaking it down into more manageable steps. As you research your topic, creating an outline and a working bibliography can help you structure your paper and keep track of all of the references you use.

Begin by doing your research and writing your paper, but be sure to keep a careful record of all your references. Next, write the abstract section of your paper only after you are completely finished writing your paper. Finally, put all of your references together and create a title page. Once you have completed these steps, spend a little time editing your paper and reviewing your finished APA paper to be sure that all of the formatting is accurate.

If you need additional help with APA format, consider purchasing a copy of the official Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.

Reference
American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

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