This site is intended for users of the APA style. We also supply the same tutorial using either MLA or CMS style.

This site is intended for users of the APA style. We also supply the same tutorial using either MLA or CMS style.


Formatting your essay based on the APA guidelines (6th ed.) can be quite tricky. Fortunately, this guide shall help you score high marks for professionalism. And, even if you’re not intending to see clearly, do scroll down to download our free APA essay template.

Note: All detailed instructions refer to Microsoft Word. If you’re using an alternate word processor, you may need to seek out an equivalent setting.

The Basic Principles

Essay Components

An APA paper has four parts:

  1. The Title Page
  2. The Abstract
  3. The Essay
  4. The Reference List

It’s best to separate your lives each section with a typical page break (Insert > Page Break).

The default font is Times New Roman, size 12 (an inferior dimensions are fine for footnotes). It’s a serif font if you select any other font, make sure. is legal You may possibly, however, use a sans-serif font for captions and descriptions in figures and tables.

All around since 2007, the default margin for any Word document has been 1 inch. Fortunately, APA format gets the requirement that is same. If for some reason you need to fix the margins, go to Page Layout > Margins > Normal.

All of the text in your essay must certanly be double-spaced. A to highlight all text and then press Home > Line and Paragraph Spacing (symbol) > 2.0 to make this change quickly, first press Ctrl. Be sure you also click on “Remove Space After Paragraph.”

Let’s look in the layout that is basic of APA title page:

Let’s break up what goes in making a great title page. The very first thing you’ll want to do is make sure that your first page is formatted independently through the other countries in the paper. To accomplish so click on Page Layout > Page Setup > Layout > Different First Page.

Then add a web page number (Insert > Page Number > Plain no. 3) and add a head that is running. The running head is your essay title in 50 characters or less (that includes spaces and punctuation). If your title that is full is long, provide a shorter version. When you’ve typed the title, press Tab once or twice to really make the Running head flush using the left margin. Don’t forget to utilize the font that is right.

Once you add your title, make sure that you capitalize important words, not prepositions and articles.

Optional: you can add an note that is author’s the bottom of your title page. For more information, please see pp. 24-25 for the Publication Manual associated with American Psychological Association (6th ed.). The author’s note is more widespread for published papers, and a lot of students can safely ignore it.

The abstract receives its own page:

This time leave out of the words “Running head” and give simply the title (or the shortened version). Insert a page number (Insert > Page Number > Plain no. 3), and then make sure your header is in the right font (Times New Roman, size 12). Each subsequent page should are in possession of the correct header.

Centre your message Abstract and left-align the summary that is actual. Do not indent this paragraph.

Essay Start Page

Your essay really begins regarding the third page:

Finally, don’t forget to cite your sources:

For lots more details, please visit our page on formatting the reference list.

APA papers in many cases are divided in to sections. If you’d love to organize your material with headings, you can select from a true number of various headers. Start with using first level headers and use the others for sub-headers:

First Level Header (Bold, Centered, and in Title Case)

Second Level Header (Bold, Left Aligned, plus in Title Case)

Third level header (indented, bold, and lowercase), ending with an interval.

Fourth level header (just like the level that is third nevertheless now in italics!).

Fifth level header (just like the level that is fourth but not in bold).

As you care able to see, you don’t need to use some complex numbering system (e.g., 3.2.1b) to prepare your opinions. The formatting of the header does the key.

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