Understanding how to write research papers in APA format
Research papers are documented in different formats depending upon the subject area of research. In academia, the instructors choose the documentation styles for the papers they assign, with regard to the nature of the project. The APA style was developed by the American Psychological Association, keeping in mind the specific documentation requirements of Psychology researchers. It is quite similar to the ASA format which the American Sociological Association put together for documenting sociology research data. Hence, it is highly preferred for sociology research papers as well as psychology papers. In academia, it is also used for documenting research papers in many other subjects. If you know that you would be handling APA style papers often in your course, it is better to figure out how to write research papers in APA format, in advance.
The specifications of the APA style
As any other documentation style, the APA style also has many unique features and rules which set it apart from the other formats. If you take note of those points, it will be easier to understand how to write a research paper in APA format. A research paper becomes complete only when documented in the most appropriate style. And when it comes to the APA style, there are many aspects to be remembered and rules to be followed.
• The running head: If you make a list of the most unique features of the APA style, the running-head would top the list. The running-head is a part of the complete title; a phrase which makes sense even after being separated from the rest of it. It appears on the title page as well as all the consequent pages, alongside the page number. If the title is “Divorce: a rising concern among societies in India”, the running head would be “Divorce: a rising concern”. The running head is only meant to help the reader focus on the topic, in general.
• The citations: The in-text citations in an APA style paper are to be in the (author, date) format. The surname of the author and the date of publishing are separated by a comma and enclosed in parentheses. A list of the sources with complete details is to be attached to the end of the research paper with the heading of ‘references’. You must refer to the latest edition of APA style manual to find out the formats for citing different types of sources.
The regular style updates
Before setting out to learn how to write a research paper in APA format, you must understand that style rules keep getting updated at regular intervals. Hence, it is necessary that you keep track of the style updates throughout your academic term. The specifications given in the latest edition of the manual of style would overrule all those mentioned in the previous issues. You will be able to find the updated editions in your school or university libraries.
Getting professional assistance
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