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Citation Resources: APA Formatting Guidelines

Layout in Word

  1. Page Numbers --  Insert tab -- Select Page Number - Top Right (3rd option) - be sure your numbers are the same font as your paper.
  2. Margin -- In Layout tab, select Margin and set to Normal.
  3. Font -- Serif fonts recommended for printed papers (Times New Roman 12 pt or Georgia 11 pt; san serif for online papers Calibri 11 pt or Arial 11 pt. Consult your syllabus.  Keep the same font throughout the paper (except for graphics - APA manual 2.19)
  4. Spacing - Home tab - Paragraph control dialog (little box on the bottom right)
    1. Change line spacing to Double.  
    2. Change All Spacing After to 0 (this makes everything double spaced - even Reference list)
  5. First page of Text (actually page 2) Center the title at the top of the page and bold it
  6. Indent the first line of each paragraph of your text -- use the Tab key.

Title Page Formatting

Follow your professor's guidelines for the format of your title page.  If there are no guidelines given, here are the guidelines provided in the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual (section 2.3)

  • Center text, press Enter 5-6 times to get below 2" maker on the left
  • Title of the paper-bolded - Skip an extra space before adding the rest of the title page information
  • Author(s) of paper (see section 2.5 for entering multiple authors)
  • University or college name
  • Course number and name
  • Professor's name
  • Assignment due date (write out full month name - September 18, 2020)
  • Page number (goes in top right of title page - you can set this to happen automatically-see Layout instructions)
  • Insert a page break to begin your paper on a new page - Insert Tab - Pages - Page Break.

Running Head

Running Head is only required for a paper that is going to be published.  Running heads are not required for student papers unless the instructor or institution requires it.  (Consult your syllabus.)  The only header required for a student paper is the page number.

Reference List

The reference list should be on a separate page following the text of the paper. 

  • Center the word References at the top of the page, bolded and capitalized.  
  • Double space all entries (within and in between each entry)
  • Indenting -- first line of the reference should be aligned to the left margin, with all subsequent lines of the reference indented 0.5 inches.  In Word this can be accomplished by highlighting all the list, go to Home tab, select Paragragh Control Dialog as you did for spacing.  Under Indentation- Special dropdown box, choose Indent.