OWL at Purdue Logo

This page is brought to you by the OWL at Purdue (https://owl.english.purdue.edu/). When printing this page, you must include the entire legal notice at bottom.

Contributors:Kristen Seas, Allen Brizee.
Summary:

This workshop provides an overview of APA (American Psychological Association) style and where to find help with different APA resources. It provides an annotated list of links to all of our APA materials and an APA overview. It is an excellent place to start to learn about APA format.

APA Style Workshop

Welcome to the OWL Workshop on APA Style! This workshop will introduce you to important aspects of using the American Psychological Association (APA) Style to write and format research papers. You should begin with the introductory material, which covers what APA Style is, why it is used, and who should apply it to their work. Then you are invited to work through the OWL's handouts on APA Formatting and Writing Style, as well as APA Citations and Reference Lists.

NOTE: This workshop should answer most of your basic questions about using APA Style. However, if you are writing a complex document such as a thesis or lengthy manuscript, or if you have detailed questions, you should consult The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition), which you can usually find at your local library or in many bookstores.

The APA also has a website that allows you to order the book online and read some of their frequently asked questions about APA style. Purdue's OWL also has a list of Additional Resources covering APA style that you can consult.

What is APA Style?

APA Style establishes standards of written communication concerning:

Why Use APA?

Aside from simplifying the work of editors by having everyone use the same format for a given publication, using APA Style makes it easier for readers to understand a text by providing a familiar structure they can follow. Abiding by APA's standards as a writer will allow you to:

Who Should Use APA?

APA Style describes rules for the preparation of manuscripts for writers and students in:

Before you adopt this style for your paper, you should check to see what citation style your discipline uses in its journals and for student research. If APA Style is appropriate for your writing project, then use this workshop to learn more about APA and how to follow its rules correctly in your own work.

APA Formatting and Writing Style

You should start by becoming familiar with the general formatting requirements of APA Style, as well as the different standards for writing that are expected among APA writers. Because APA is different than other writing styles, you should pay attention to everything from general paper layout to word choice. The following pages will introduce you to some of these basic requirements of APA Style to get you started in the right direction.

General APA Format

Types of APA Papers

APA Stylistics: Basics

APA Stylistics: Things to Avoid

APA Citations and Reference List

Perhaps the trickiest part to mastering APA Style is understanding the requirements for citing and listing secondary sources accurately. The following pages walk you through the details of writing citations and developing a reference page at the end of your paper. Read these guidelines carefully! It is important that you refer to your sources according to APA Style so your readers can quickly follow the citations to the reference page and then, from there, locate any sources that might be of interest to them. They will expect this information to be presented in a particular style, and any deviations from that style could result in confusing your readers about where you obtained your information.

In-Text Citations: The Basics

In-Text Citations: Author/Authors

Footnotes and Endnotes

Reference List: Basic Rules

Reference List: Author/Authors

Reference List: Articles in Periodicals

Reference List: Books

Reference List: Other Print Sources

Reference List: Electronic Sources

Reference List: Other Non-Print Sources