How To Write References In APA Format In 2022

The American Psychological Association (APA) style is a writing style guide extensively made use of in the social sciences and psychology. The APA style guide covers a wide range of formatting concerns in academic writing. This article talks more about how to write references in APA format.

This includes in-text and reference citations, as well as the abstract and title page. Through APA format samples, you can learn the ins and outs of the APA writing style.

In 1923, the American Psychological Association (APA) began producing journals. In 1929, an APA committee issued a seven-page writer’s guide in the Psychological Bulletin.

However, in 1944, the same publication published a 32-page guide as an article. They published the first edition of the APA Publication Manual, a 61-page supplement to the Psychological Bulletin in 1952.

This is the start of the widely accepted “APA style.” They revised the first edition twice: once in 1957 and again in 1967. In 1974, 1983, 1994, 2001, 2009, and 2019, they launched new editions.

What Is APA Style?

The American Psychological Association (APA) style (also known as the American Psychological Association format) is a writing style and format for academic works such as scientific journal articles and books.

In the behavioural and social sciences, it is often made use of in citing sources. The American Psychological Association’s (APA) style guide, named the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, describes it.

What Is The General APA Formatting Expectations?

It’s all about the format of creating an APA paper. The following are the basic APA formatting requirements for a research paper in an academic setting.

It is required to use double spacing and typed (rather than handwritten) work. 8.5 x 11-inch paper should be used for all submissions.

Each page of the essay should have a page header with the page number flush to the right. Professional papers also feature a short version of the essay’s title that is less than 50 characters long. This is referred to as a running head.

On every page, one-inch margins are required. Also, the font should be very legible and clear. You use Times New Roman in 12-point font.

The title page, the body, and the references must all be included in an essay. According to APA 7, professional articles must also provide an abstract.

Include a centred (horizontally and vertically) title on the title page. The name of the author should appear beneath the title. It should list the institution with which the author is affiliated beneath the author’s name.

The professional essay’s abstract should be on the second page. It should be titled “Abstract” and should be between 150 and 200 words long. The research topic, question, method, analysis, participants, and overall analysis are all included in the abstract.

In the text’s body, citations should include the author’s surname, year of publication, and the page number.

A signal phrase followed by author, year, and page number suffices for brief quotations: “Further work on this important subject is required,” Smith says (2009, 50).

Blockquotes should be used for quotes longer than 40 words. Blockquotes are single-spaced, indented, and feature a lead-in sentence. They also include a reference at the end.

Just as you would with a quote, include the author’s name, date, and page number when paraphrasing: The current evidence, according to Smith (2009), shows that more research is required (pg. 50).

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How do I Write the Reference Page Using the APA Format?

At the end of the paper, the APA style requires a “References” section rather than a “Works Cited” page. Instead of sharing a page with the end of the body, the references section should always start on a new page.

The following is the structure of an APA reference page:

#1. Book Entry

Up to nineteen writers, the last name first, first name or initial second, with an ampersand (&) separating the final author (not the word “and”), then a period.

(In parenthesis, a period follows the year of publication.) The work’s title is The work’s subtitle.

Only the first word of the title and subtitle ought to be capitalized. After the publisher, there is a period.

#2. Journal Entry:

Up to nineteen authors can be listed, the last name first, first name or initial second, period third. (in parentheses, a period follows the year of publication.)

A period follows the work’s title. In italics, the title of the anthology or journal in which the quoted work was published, with the volume number if applicable.

(If applicable, issue number in plain text in parentheses, followed by a comma if page numbers follow), page numbers in plain text, a period, and the URL. After a URL, there is no period.

#3. Web Content:

Up to nineteen authors can be listed, the last name first, first name or initial second, period third.

(in parentheses, place the date of publication, then a period.) Italicized page title, followed by a period.

The website’s name in plain text, followed by a period. is the URL of your source. After the URL or DOI, do not use a period.

Some Examples Of Reference Page Citations

The examples below show how to properly cite a work in the “References” section of an APA paper. It should alphabetize reference lists at all times. For multiple-line entries, double-spaced and use a hanging indent.

  • Bennett, D. (2011). Strategies and techniques in teaching reading. Goucher College.
  • Carroll, J.P. (1966). Some neglected relationships in reading and language. Elementary English, 43, 511-582.
  • Dickinson, D.K. & McCabe, A. (2001). Bringing it all together: The multiple origins, skills, and environmental supports of early literacy. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 16, 186-202.
  • Graves, M., Juel, C., Graves, B., & Dewitz, P. (2011). Teaching reading in the 21st century, motivating all learners. Allyn & Bacon.
  •  Mesmer, H.A.E. & Griffith, P.L. (2005). Everybody’s selling it: But just what is explicit, systematic phonics instruction? International Reading Association, 366-376.

Understanding The APA Outline Format

When you look at the example of APA outline format below, you’ll notice that:

  • The key headers of your plan are written in Roman numerals.
  • The first level of subheadings is written in capital letters.
  • Within those subheadings, Arab numerals (1-9 type numbers) are utilized.
  • Below Arab number subheadings, lower-case letters are used.
  • Below those subheadings, Arab numerals in parentheses are used.

The whole sentence outline is formatted in the same way. The only difference is that at each level of the outline, you will write a complete sentence rather than a sentence fragment.

The APA decimal outline is a less common format, but it is not unheard of. It’s the most straightforward of the bunch.

Simply divide your headings into paragraphs and use Arabic numerals to number them. The first number denotes the headline, the second denotes the paragraph, and the third denotes the point to be stated.

The initial heading is labelled with the number 1.0.

  • 1.1 is the first paragraph of the first heading.
  • 1.1.1 is the first point or sentence in your first paragraph.
  • 1.1.2 is the second sentence.
  • 1.2.2 is the second sentence of your second paragraph.
  • You proceed to 2.0 when you go on to the second heading.
  • 2.1.1 is the first sentence in the first paragraph under your second heading.

Your instructor ought to tell you which format they would like you to make use of. If you don’t know, ask!

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What are the Three Ways to Outline?

Examining examples is the greatest approach to learn about the three different APA outline structures. We’ve given you an example of each:

  • APA basic outline
  • Full sentence format
  • Decimal outline format

More Tips On How You Create An Outline

A well-written plan can help you write the greatest research paper possible. You can create a structure for what you’ll say and how you’ll say it by creating an outline.

Here are some pointers on how to make a fantastic outline:

#1. Coordination:

A well-organized outline requires you to coordinate your headings. The term “coordination” refers to the fact that each of your headings has the same level of importance.

Subheadings are subject to the same rule. If you feel that one of your titles is less important than another, consider making it a subsection instead.

#2. Division:

The simple guideline of division is to make your outline sections specific and split them up rather than allowing them to become verbose.

Make sure that each subsection complements the major headline. If it doesn’t, move it or delete it.

#3. Parallelism:

Keeping a consistent structure between headers and subheadings is referred to as parallelism.

To keep your plan tidy and your writing on track, use parallelism. If each heading begins with a verb, then all of your headers and subheadings should begin with a verb as well.

The relationship between headings and subheadings is known as subordination. To keep your headers and subheadings in the correct sequence, use subordination.

Headings should be broad at first, with subheadings becoming more specialized as you go deeper.

After laying out these exact requirements, it may appear like writing a paper outline will be just as difficult as writing the paper itself. That is not the case. You create a backbone for your paper by using this framework.

What are the Key APA Style Issues?

The preceding guidelines apply to all research papers; however, there are a few points to note concerning the APA style in particular. Specifically:

  • The paper must be written professionally. There should be no personal statements or stories in the presentation.
  • Because you’re reporting on previous work, the paper should be written in the past tense.
  • Use contractions sparingly (e.g., “don’t”).
  • When mentioning an outside source, either incorporate it into the structure of your sentence or reference it at the conclusion of the phrase with parentheses.

Tips for Writing APA-Style Research Papers

Most professional publications call for manuscripts to follow the APA (American Psychological Association) style guide when submitting them.

While some minor differences may exist, the APA style is the recognized publication format.

Here are some tips to write a paper research recommendation using the APA style.

Basic Tips:

#1. Follow the APA Style

The best advice for research paper writers is to learn the APA style and follow its requirements while writing reports and papers.

By doing so, any specific adjustments required by a particular journal will only cause minimal revisions to your copy prior to submission.

#2. Use the Standard Organizational Sections

The abstract, introduction, method (experimental, hypothesis), findings, and conclusions are the basic sections of a scientific study or paper.

Each of these sections has extremely minimal content formats and criteria. Examining each part will help you organize your research and ensure that you are prepared to report it accurately.

#1. Abstract

Any scientific paper’s abstract should reveal what research was conducted and provide a concise description of the findings.

According to the APA Style Guide, a research paper’s abstract should be around 120 words long and include one phrase for each of the paper’s components.

It should briefly explain the work being described in the abstract.

#2. Introduction

The scope of the introduction is significantly broader. It comprises a thorough assessment of the literature on the research topic and seeks to communicate what is known about the subject of interest.

The introduction also outlines the essentials of interest, descriptively and accurately, as well as what it would do to further examine it. A brief discussion of the suggested research is conducted considering what is currently known.

#3. Method

The experimental portion is another name for the method part. This part is used to explain not only how the research was carried out but also what was employed.

All the equipment used in a chemical or physical experiment is an example of a chemical or physical experiment. Its name, model number, and manufacturer identify each piece of hardware.

There should be enough information supplied so that any other researcher might easily reproduce the findings of the presented study.

#4. Results

The findings section is where the data is analyzed. This part assesses the information and compares it to past findings.

There is also a comparison with results acquired using various measurement methods.

#5. Conclusions of the Discussion

The experiments either confirmed or disproved the theory, as stated in the discussion section. The significance of these investigations is discussed based on the findings.

#6. References

The APA style guide specifies how references should be written in the paper. Books, journals, and internet sources all have their own formats.

Make sure you’re citing your sources correctly. According to the citation, arrange the references alphabetically.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does APA offer a workbook in APA style?

Yes. Mastering APA Style is a workbook that assists students to learn APA style.

What is a citation?

A citation is a quote or a reference to an article, book, passage, or some other text or author.

How do I format a bibliography in APA style?

Instead of a bibliography or works cited page, the APA style requires a list of references. All references cited in the text of a document must be listed alphabetically by the first author’s last name, according to the rules for a reference list. As a result, it must reference parenthetically all references in the reference list and appear somewhere in the work.

What is a hanging indent?

A hanging indent explains how the sources in a reference list are typed.

How do I cite a quotation within the text?

Right Before writing the quote, you should usually utilize the quoted person’s name. Then, at the conclusion of the quote, add a ‘p.’ for the page number, followed by the page number in parentheses.


APA style is extensively employed, either completely or partially, by hundreds of other scientific journals including medical and other public health journals), in many textbooks, and in academia (for papers written in classes), demonstrating its importance in the academic world. 

I hope this article gives you a clear understanding on how to write references In APA Format.



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