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Welcome to the Purdue OWL
One of the distinguishing features of an APA-formatted essay is the running head. This is a short version of your title—fewer than 50 characters—that appears in the header of your document, justified with the left margin. On subsequent pages, though, the running head is just the title. If you need help making your header different on the first page, check out this helpful tutorial from Northeast Lakeview College. Pro tip: Make sure that your running head is descriptive enough to give the reader some idea of the content.
In APA style, you include the page number in the header of every page.
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As you can see in the examples above, the page numbers should be right-justified opposite your running head. Another key element of APA essay format is the cover page.
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While the use of a cover page is not unique to APA, the manual does specify a preferred layout, which includes not only the aforementioned running head, but also the following elements:. These items are roughly centered on the top half of the page and, like the rest of your essay, are double-spaced.
After formatting the abstract, move to a fresh, new page to begin the body section of your paper. First, you need to restate the title of your paper. This serves as a label to signify the start of the actual paper. I know, it seems sort of silly with the running head right there for all the world to see. You see, the folks at the APA assume that readers are smart enough to know that the first section of a paper is the introduction.
This information must match what you provide in the reference list at the end of the paper.
The reference list or bibliography should be formatted in the following manner:. APA style provides numerous rules for accurately editing research papers. This fact does not mean unnecessary efforts but rather that effective and correct formatting of written research helps both the author to effectively pass along information to the reader. Just fill out the form, press the button, and have no worries!
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Include the paper's title, your name and the name of your school, as illustrated below. Be sure to center the words on your title page beginning in the upper half of the page.
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APA recommends a title of no more than 12 words that does not contain unnecessary words or abbreviations. Double space all text on the title page. Include an abstract of your paper on a new page. Center the word "Abstract" without the use of any special formatting, such as bold type, italics or quotation marks. Double space the text of your toword, one-paragraph abstract. Insert in-text citations, where appropriate, throughout your paper as close as possible to information you are borrowing from one of your sources.
APA requires use of the author-date format for citing sources, as exampled below. Include reference list bibliography citations that correspond to your in-text citations. Start your reference list at the end of your paper on a separate page. Label the page "References" without the use of special formatting, including quotation marks.