The students who have to complete an assignment for their social sciences, psychology or education classes often deal with a need to use APA formatting. Organizing a paper and a list of references in such a format is not difficult, but it looks different from other formats.
As a result, there are several important tips to remember in order to avoid mistakes while completing an assignment in APA style.
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- First of all, it is important to explain that APA is known as the style of the American Psychological Association. To be exact, it originated from the article that was published in 1929 in Psychological Bulletin that served as a basis for the further creation of the guidelines. It was eventually used as an example during the development of the APA Publication Manual. Nowadays, APA is commonly used by a lot of students who complete various writing tasks in education, linguistics, social sciences, and psychology.
Since APA is different from other formatting styles, it is better to keep an eye on the differences and similarities between them. For instance, if a student has never used this format before because he or she has been writing in MLA or Chicago style only, it could be difficult for him or her to get accustomed to writing in different formatting. As a result, a lot of students often become surprised to see that, after spending much time following other rules in formatting, they need to complete a reference list, citations, title page, or headings differently. Eventually, it is fair to state that such a transition can be challenging, especially if a student has to switch from one format to another while preparing papers for various classes.
Furthermore, it is essential to remember that APA should always be selected while writing the term papers or essays on nursing, linguistics, psychology, and other social sciences. By choosing this format, it has to be easier for all students to describe their ideas and to provide information in a clear and consistent format. Consequently, following such a consistent style of writing can help the readers to understand what to check first as while they are reading some journal articles.
In order not to get confused with APA formatting, it is critical to keep an eye on the following sections: the title page, abstract, the main section of the paper, and the list of references. Focusing on these parts can make understanding APA format easier and help to avoid most common errors. For example, every paper in APA should start with a title page that needs to include such details as the title of the work, the name of the author, and educational institution. The purpose of the title page is to help the reader to see what the paper is about and who wrote it.
- The second step in writing a paper in APA is adding an abstract after the title page. To be exact, it is a summary of the writing that should be no more than 150 to 250 word. This part should provide information for a reader that could eventually make the whole text interesting to explore. It is true that writing an abstract is not always required but, in most cases, when a student has to complete a paper in APA, he or she needs to remember about adding this part.
While working on some type of essay or term paper, the main body of the text is the most complicated part of the assignment. Eventually, it would be easier to work on it in case a student can break it down into several sections. Thanks to shorter parts, it would not be hard for a reader to look through the whole paper quickly. At the same time, it would become easier for a writer to work on smaller parts of the text as well because then it will be possible to avoid adding too much unnecessary information.
- Here, the students should not forget about the importance of the great introduction that should serve as a good presentation of the topic. Then, it is critical to come up with interesting sections and to cover all important questions that will make the paper complete. Finally, of course, the conclusion should become the last part of writing where the main points of the paper should be explained.
- The fourth section that requires special attention should be the reference list. Every student needs to remember mentioning all the sources that he or she has used while working on their paper on the last page of his or her work. However, they should not add too many unnecessary sources as well. At the same time, it is a mistake to mention the sources that were not indicated in the text to just to increase their number.
There are some other essential tips every student should keep in mind in order to complete a high-quality paper with references in APA style. If such rules are followed, following APA is no longer a challenge. First of all, it is critical to remember that the reference list starts with a new page. Then, it is essential to put all entries on a reference list in alphabetical order. Besides, it is a mistake to ignore the fact that the first line of every reference has to be flush with the left margin. Moreover, it is worth remembering that the titles of the journals, books, periodicals, and movies should be italicized both on a reference list and within the text. Finally, it should be highlighted that the reference list as well a the whole paper should always be double-spaced except for the cases when the teacher requires the students to make it single-spaced.
In conclusion, completing an assignment in APA should not be difficult for those students who are aware of the most important parts of writing formats. Now, understanding how to work with APA format can be very important for working with numerous tasks for social sciences, linguistics, nursing, psychology, or education classes. Remembering APA tips that are mentioned above would be a key to impressing a teacher and getting a higher mark!