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APA Style

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APA Style

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  1. APA Style

  2. Basic Requirements for Lab Papers • 1 in. margins (top, bottom, left, right) • Double spaced • 12 pt. times new roman font • Each page has page header • Contains few words from title & pg. # • Remember to write with clarity and avoid flowery and personal language • Don’t say “I/We did this …” • Use proper grammar, I know everyone has passed basic English

  3. Overview of APA Paper • Title Page • Abstract • Introduction • Methods • Results • Discussion • References • Tables • Figures

  4. Title Page • Contains running head • Abbreviated title (no more than 50 characters including punctuation and spaces) • Centered in the upper half of the page • Title • Name of author • Institution

  5. Abstract • Sectioned labeled “Abstract” centered at the top • Brief but detailed summary of the paper • Statement of the problem • Brief description of the methods • Mention important findings & conclusions • No paragraph indentation • Approx. 200 words or 15 single-spaced lines in length

  6. Introduction (3 pages minimum) • Not labeled; all other sections are • Begin w/ background • Define relevant terms • Don’t simply put paragraph after paragraph outlining other papers • Integrate them!!!! • No direct quotes

  7. Introduction (3 pages minimum) • Though not an exhaustive review should adequately be able to introduce the problem, what has been done, and what will be done • E.g. memory • Descriptions of studies don’t need to be complete, talk about stuff (variables, manipulations, results) relevant to your study

  8. Introduction (3 pages minimum) • After background is given begin to discuss theoretical basis for current experiment • Translate the hypothesis into operational terms that tell what variables are being manipulated and what are being measured • Don’t simply put IV was this… DV was this…

  9. Methods • Write in a way that others could repeat the experiment exactly how you did it • Contains • Participants describe who was in the study • Apparatus & Materials what was used • Don’t go into ridiculous detail (e.g. pencils) • Procedure how the experiment was done • May reference figures if illustrate apparatus or technique

  10. Results • Summarize collected data & statistical treatment of data • Describe only what was measured • E.g. “This study measured latency by averaging the time for 3 trials” • Describe data (e.g. means & s.d.) • E.g. the mean number of words recalled on day 1 was higher (12) compared to day 2 (5)

  11. Results • Mention statistical tests performed & results of them • E.g. an independent t-test was used to determine… • E.g. as predicted studying raised student’s GPA t(df) = t-observed, p<0.05 • F(df numerator, df denominator) = F-observed, p<0.05 • Refer to graphs/tables to illustrate the data • Describe what they mean • Eg. mean number of errors with s.d. are shown in table 1 • Eg. the difference in performance from day 1 to day 2 is illustrated in figure 1

  12. Results • No interpretations until discussion • Only facts and findings are in the results • "All we want are the facts, ma'am" – Joe Friday

  13. Discussion (2 pages minimum) • Purpose here is to interpret the results and explain what conclusions can be drawn from them • Begin with concise statement of results • E.g. The results of the present study indicate (are in agreement)… • Make inferences about the psychological process of interest from the measures used in the study • What conclusions can be drawn from the results

  14. Discussion (2 pages minimum) • Mention limitations and sources of error • Explain why these weakness occurred • How could study be improved • Don’t need a laundry list • Make sure to give appropriate citations • How do the results fit with current theories or hypothesis • Relate to what other studies have found

  15. Discussion (2 pages minimum) • End on good note • What are the directions for future studies • Be reasonable and give logic for why they would be good studies to do • Avoid statements like: “more subjects are needed”

  16. References • List references mentioned in paper • Since we gave you 4 empirical papers you need to give at least 2 • You can use reviews or book chapters but they don’t count towards the 2 • NO online sources (e.g. wikipedia)

  17. References • Proper citation needed • In the paper • (Author’s last name, year) • (Kolb, 1998) or (Kolb & Whishaw, 2000) or (Kolb, Whishaw & Robinson, 2003) • In Author’s last name (year), it was suggested • In Kolb and Whishaw (1999)…

  18. References • Reference section • One author • Vallar, G. (1998). Spatial hemineglect in humans. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 2(3), 87-97. • More than one author • Szele, F. G., Alexander, C., & Chesselet, M. F. (1995). Expression of molecules associated with neuronal plasticity in the striatum after aspiration and thermocoagulatory lesions of the cerebral cortex in adult rats. Journal of Neuroscience, 15(6), 4429- 4448. • Book • Sholl, D. A. (1956) The Organization of the Cerebral Cortex. London: Methuen.

  19. References • If you have any question about APA style there are 5 non-circulating copies of the APA manual in the library • How to find references • Library (website) • www.pubmed.org • psychinfo

  20. Tables • Contain data • Contain examples of measures • Lists of words • Lists of stories

  21. Table Example Table 1. Words Used in Study

  22. Table Example Table 2. Average (S.D.) Number of Words Recalled Each Day For Experiment 1

  23. Figures • Figure captions page prior • Describe figures • Each figure gets its own separate page

  24. Figures • Figures can also be illustrations mentioned in methods

  25. Logic of APA Paper • Flow of information • How the problem was conceptualized • How the problem was researched • How the data was analyzed • What were the findings • How were the findings interpreted

  26. Logic of APA Paper Introduction Methods Results Discussion

  27. Most Important DO NOT PLAGARIZE