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RULES FOR APA WRITING. Used with permission from: John R. Slate, Ph.D. GUIDELINES FOR WRITING IN AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION 4TH EDITION STYLE. TYPING INSTRUCTIONS. All margins are 1 inch, no more-no less. Your page header is printed at the 1 inch margin line, not above it [p. 240].

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rules for apa writing

RULES FOR APA WRITING

Used with permission from:

John R. Slate, Ph.D.

slide2
GUIDELINES FOR WRITING IN

AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION

4TH EDITION STYLE

typing instructions
TYPING INSTRUCTIONS
  • All margins are 1 inch, no more-no less. Your page header is printed at the 1 inch margin line, not above it [p. 240].
  • If using WORD, you will need to set FIVE margins: left margin, right margin, top margin, bottom margin, and header margin
  • If using WordPerfect, only need to set FOUR margins: left, right, top, bottom
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All writing is DOUBLE-SPACED, NOT single, or triple, simply DOUBLE-SPACED [p. 239]. You will have NO exceptions to this rule.
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Manuscript is LEFT-justified (results in right side being uneven). [p. 240]
  • No hyphenation unless word is written as such (e.g., at-risk, t-test).[pp. 70-74]
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Space ONCE, after ALL punctuation. After internal periods in abbreviations, no space occurs (e.g., a.m., U.S.). [p. 244]
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Avoid leaving a single line at the bottom of a page (i.e., first line of a paragraph begins at the bottom of a page and then carries over to the next page--called a widow).
  • Avoid leaving a single line at the top of a page (i.e., last line of a paragraph is carried over to the next page--called an orphan).
  • In WORD or in WordPerfect, go into format; page; keep text together; and set the widow/orphan protection.
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11. Headings are Level One (centered, first letters capitalized); Level Three (flush left margin, underlined, first letters capitalized); Level Four (indented five spaces, underlined, and followed by a period). Information regarding headings and their levels can be found on pages 242-243.
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12. Words/phrases are not artificially emphasized using bold, single or double quote marks, underlining, or by any other means. The only words that have quote marks around them are quotations and you must cite the specific pages from which the quote was taken.
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13. Use an Arial or New Times Roman 10 or 12 point font size. Use the same font size and font type throughout your paper.
  • Be careful when typing your page header that it is the same font and same font size as your text. You must set it with most word processing programs.
citations
CITATIONS
  • Do NOT have studies cited in your reference section UNLESS they are cited in the text of your paper.
  • Just because you read an article does NOT mean it belongs in your reference section.
  • Every study cited in the text of your paper MUST be referenced on your reference page.
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ALWAYS provide a citation for anyone else's work you use in paraphrased or quoted form to write paper. [p. 168]
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ALWAYS provide a page number(s) for any quotations you use, as well as the authors.
  • ‘&’ is used within parentheses.
  • ‘And’ is used in text of paper.
slide21
When citing a study with more than two authors, after the first citation in which all names listed, cite the first author's last name and then et al., year (e.g., Slate et al., 1995) [pp. 169-170]
references
REFERENCES
  • See pages 174-188 in APA 4th edition manual.
  • The references are begun on a new page.
referencing electronic materials
Referencing Electronic Materials
  • website at:
  • http://www.beadsland.com/weapas/#AV
general information
GENERAL INFORMATION
  • Write the literature review in PAST TENSE.
  • PAST TENSE writing does not have to be passive or boring, but should be ACTIVE. [pp. 32-33]
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Write the research proposal, with the exception of the literature review, in FUTURE TENSE
  • Writing is FORMAL and TECHNICAL
  • FEELING words are not used
  • Do NOT write the way in which you carry on a conversation
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Paragraphs must be more than two sentences. NO one or two sentence paragraphs.
  • Avoid long paragraphs greater than seven sentences. Paragraphs should range in size from three to seven sentences.
  • Count: 3 to 7 sentences per paragraph. Only exceptions are: Definitions of Term section and Hypotheses section.
slide27
Contractions are NOT used. Don’t have any in your paper.
  • The word data is a plural term: data ARE, the word datum is singular.
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Make sure that nouns and verbs are in agreement; if one is singular, so should be the other; if one is plural, so should be the other. [pp. 34-35]
  • Make sure your nouns and pronouns are in agreement as well. That is, if you use student in the beginning of your paper, then the pronoun used later should NOT be ‘their’ ...
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Avoid using, ‘There is’ or ‘There are’, as this writing is very passive. When you find a sentence that begins this way, delete the there is/are and add a verb after the first noun present in the sentence.
  • Do NOT write, ‘This is’, as ‘This’ always refers to something. Along the same lines, do not write, those are, because those always refers to those what.
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It's means it is and is NOT a possessive pronoun. As contractions are NOT used in APA style, you may NOT use it's.

11.Its is a possessive pronoun and may be used, when and where appropriate.

12.Avoid using IT as it, many times, is unclear to what the IT refers. Always be clear to the reader about what you are discussing.

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13.Do NOT use the word DONE unless you are or have cooked something. Done does NOT mean completed or finished in technical writing.

14.Connect your sentences together with integrating phrases or words. Avoid jumpy writing [pp. 24-28]. One way to integrate sentences together is to use a few of the key words from the previous sentence in writing a new sentence.

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15.Alternate sentence beginnings so that your sentences do NOT begin the same way all the time. Avoid using THE to begin your sentences.
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16. Connect your paragraphs together with integrating phrases or words. Avoid jumps between paragraphs [pp. 24-28]. One way to integrate paragraphs together is to use some of the words from the previous paragraph in beginning the next paragraph or through use of such phrases as: In contrast to the findings above...Similar to Smith’s findings...
slide34
17.Alternate paragraph beginnings so that your paragraphs do NOT begin the same way all the time. Avoid using The to begin paragraphs.

18.While and since can be used ONLY in terms of time. Since does NOT mean because in technical writing. Words such as though, although, and whereas are acceptable alternatives to while. [pp. 42-43]

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19.Do NOT begin a sentence with an abbreviation. [p. 89] If you have to spell the term out again, then do so.

20.Avoid using colloquial expressions (e.g., write up for report or set up for develop) [p. 28].

21.Avoid using pronouns as pronouns confuse readers unless the referent is obvious. [pp. 36-38]

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22.Avoid bias in your writing. See pages 46-60.

23.When referring to gender of participants, use boy and girl when referring to people of high school age and younger; men and women for persons 18 years of age and older. [p. 53]

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24.Avoid using superlatives such as very or great.

25.Please use the spell check function of your word processing program prior to submitting your paper. NO excuse for having misspelled words. [p. 255] Please proof or have a colleague proof your paper for errors that a spell check cannot catch (e.g., you when you mean your).

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26. Avoid having inanimate objects engaging in animate activities. That is, do not write "Research shows" or "Techniques indicated" or "Results proved." When you have an inanimate object engaging in an animate activity (e.g., techniques which improved), you need to rearrange the wording as follows: techniques in which students' vocal responses were improved. Only people can do things in your paper.