How to format a research paper in APA format

Writing a research paper in APA is a daunting task that many college students struggle with. However, good websites for research papers make it look so easy to write such papers. This article takes you through how you can write an awesome research paper in APA Format. When writing in APA, your paper should include four major sections, including;

  • Title Page
  • Abstract
  • Main Body
  • References

Title Page

The title page contains four important elements. These include the running head/page header, tile of the paper, the name of the author (student name) and institutional affiliate.

  1. Header

    -Please note that title page is the only section of a research paper that should have the header with the words “Running Head” before you your research title in capital letters. Any other page apart from the title page should not have this page header.

  2. Title of the Paper

    learningThe main idea of the research paper should be captured in the title. Avoid unnecessary words and abbreviations in the title of your research paper. Also, don’t italicize, bold or underline the title, neither should you write the word ‘title” before it. It should be centered on the title page and typed in 12-point Times New Roman font. You can write the title in one or two lines but not in more than 12 words in length.

  • Authors Name

    – Write your names but don’t include titles such as Mr., Mrs., or Dr.

  1. Institutional Affiliate

    – This is where you conducted your research. It can be your school, college or university.

Remember that all texts appearing on the title page should be double-spaced, just like the rest of the texts in the research paper,

How to Write a Research Paper Abstract

On the next page after the title page, begin a new page with a running title. Note that from this page you shouldn’t include the word “Running Head” before the running title.  Center the word “Abstract”, on the first line of the page, but without quotation marks.  Then write a summary of the main point or ideas of your research on the following line. An abstract is typically a way of introducing your audience to the research topic, the research questions, the methodologies you used and the results/findings or rather conclusion you drew from the research.

Remember that the summary section of the research should not be indented and should be in less than 250 words. Though not a rule, you may list keywords from the research paper after the summary.  This is done by indenting and typing the ‘keywords’ in italics, followed by a list of the main keyword in your research.

The Body

Begin the body of your research paper on the following page, starting with the title head. Write the title of the research in the next line of the page in plain text (don’t bold, italicize or bold the title). The body section of an APA formatted paper features four main parts. These include; introduction, methodology, Results, and Discussion.

Introduction:

Begin a new section with an introductory paragraph (indented).  This is where you present the problem and the main idea or point that the paper is going to discuss, also known as a thesis statement.  The introduction part should be more detailed than the abstract.

Methodology-

Begin a new section with a subtitle “methodology” (Centered and bold). This part shows the reader how you conducted your research.  Describe the methods and processes that you applied in your data collection. Summarize your data in this section.

Results-

Begin a new section of the research with a subtitle “Results” (centered and bold). This section summarizes the data. Use charts and graphs to display data.

Discussion-

Begin a new section with a subtitle “Discussion” (bold and centered).  The discussion section is where you analyze and interpret the results for your research, draw conclusions with supportive information on how data led to your findings, and discusses whether or not the results from the research supported your hypothesis, and finally, determine the limitations of your study and the necessary steps that can be taken to improve on similar future studies.

Note-Remember that in-text citations are used throughout the body of the text according to APA citation styles (refer to APA 6th edition formatting guidelines). In-text citation should reflect in the list of reference.

References

On a new page, start with a running title on the first line of the page. Then, center bold the title “References” (without question marks, not underlined or italicized). List your sources according to APA referencing style (refer to APA 6th edition referencing format guide)

 

 

 

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