APA (American Psychological Association) style is most commonly used to cite sources within the social sciences. This resource, revised according to the 6th edition, second printing of the APA manual, offers examples for the general format of APA research papers, in-text citations, endnotes/footnotes, and the reference page. For more information, please consult the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, (6th ed., 2nd printing).
Contributors: Joshua M. Paiz, Elizabeth Angeli, Jodi Wagner, Elena Lawrick, Kristen Moore, Michael Anderson, Lars Soderlund, Allen Brizee, Russell Keck
Last Edited: 2018-02-21 02:26:13
Please use the example at the bottom of this page to cite the Purdue OWL in APA.
To see a side-by-side comparison of the three most widely used citation styles, including a chart of all APA citation guidelines, see the Citation Style Chart.
You can also watch our APA vidcast series on the Purdue OWL YouTube Channel.
General APA Guidelines
Your essay should be typed and double-spaced on standard-sized paper (8.5" x 11"), with 1" margins on all sides. You should use a clear font that is highly readable. APA recommends using 12 pt. Times New Roman font.
Include a page header (also known as the "running head") at the top of every page. To create a page header/running head, insert page numbers flush right. Then type "TITLE OF YOUR PAPER" in the header flush left using all capital letters. The running head is a shortened version of your paper's title and cannot exceed 50 characters including spacing and punctuation.
Major Paper Sections
Your essay should include four major sections: the Title Page, Abstract, Main Body, and References.
The title page should contain the title of the paper, the author's name, and the institutional affiliation. Include the page header (described above) flush left with the page number flush right at the top of the page. Please note that on the title page, your page header/running head should look like this:
Running head: TITLE OF YOUR PAPER
Pages after the title page should have a running head that looks like this:
TITLE OF YOUR PAPER
After consulting with publication specialists at the APA, OWL staff learned that the APA 6th edition, first printing sample papers have incorrect examples of running heads on pages after the title page. This link will take you to the APA site where you can find a complete list of all the errors in the APA's 6th edition style guide.
Type your title in upper and lowercase letters centered in the upper half of the page. APA recommends that your title be no more than 12 words in length and that it should not contain abbreviations or words that serve no purpose. Your title may take up one or two lines. All text on the title page, and throughout your paper, should be double-spaced.
Beneath the title, type the author's name: first name, middle initial(s), and last name. Do not use titles (Dr.) or degrees (PhD).
Beneath the author's name, type the institutional affiliation, which should indicate the location where the author(s) conducted the research.
Image Caption: APA Title Page
Begin a new page. Your abstract page should already include the page header (described above). On the first line of the abstract page, center the word “Abstract” (no bold, formatting, italics, underlining, or quotation marks).
Beginning with the next line, write a concise summary of the key points of your research. (Do not indent.) Your abstract should contain at least your research topic, research questions, participants, methods, results, data analysis, and conclusions. You may also include possible implications of your research and future work you see connected with your findings. Your abstract should be a single paragraph, double-spaced. Your abstract should be between 150 and 250 words.
You may also want to list keywords from your paper in your abstract. To do this, indent as you would if you were starting a new paragraph, type Keywords: (italicized), and then list your keywords. Listing your keywords will help researchers find your work in databases.
Image Caption: APA Abstract Page
Please see our Sample APA Paper resource to see an example of an APA paper. You may also visit our Additional Resources page for more examples of APA papers.
How to Cite the Purdue OWL in APA
Contributors' names and the last edited date can be found in the orange boxes at the top of every page on the OWL.
Contributors' names (Last edited date). Title of resource. Retrieved from http://Web address for OWL resource
Angeli, E., Wagner, J., Lawrick, E., Moore, K., Anderson, M., Soderlund, L., & Brizee, A. (2010, May 5). General format. Retrieved from http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/
APA Referencing Example:
Guralnik, Ferrucci, Simonsick, Salive and Wallace (1995) claimed that good nutrition and a physically active lifestyle have known benefits for prolonging functional independence and reducing the risk of disability, institutionalisation and mortality among older adults. "While improved dietary choices are seen to have a positive impact on normal ageing" (Drewnowski & Evans, 2001, p. 90), participation in regular physical activity is associated with improved ability in daily tasks, a decreased risk of falls and a decrease in the symptoms of chronic disease (Faber, Bosscher, Chin, & van Wieringen, 2006; Fiatarone et al., 1990). Even commenced later in life, and independent of disease or disability, research shows that a physically active lifestyle is an essential component of prolonged capacity in activities of daily living, referred to as functional wellbeing (Sims et al., 2006). However, while it has been reported that older adults are aware of the benefits of physical activity, less than 30% adhere to the national prescribed guidelines (Manini, Druger & Ploutz-Snyder, 2005; Marquez, Bustamante, Blissmer, & Prohaska, 2009).
At baseline, Spearman's correlation coefficients were used to investigate the associations between all variables. A strong association was defined as a moderate to large correlation, > 0.3 and > 0.5, respectively (Cohen, 1988).
With the aim of improving nutritional and activity choices for individuals and families, educators encourage greater knowledge of health, education, welfare, neighbourhoods and food supply by promoting environmental and individual barrier awareness to healthy eating and physical activity (Bartholomew, Parcel, Kok, Gottlieb, & Fernandez, 2010).
Ageing and nutrition is a growing global challenge as life expectancy increases, particularly for women. For example, the incidence of osteoporosis in older women involves its own special nutritional needs, emphases and patterns of malnutrition (World Health Organization [WHO], 2014a). Furthermore WHO (2014a) reveals in almost all countries women comprise the majority of the older population. Nutrient profiling assists to determine nutritional composition related to disease prevention (WHO, 2014b).
"Financial security, social networks and level of education are all factors in successful ageing, and reinforce the need for broad multifactorial modelling" (Marquez et al., 2009, p. 15). In the present study, individuals were members of a social network of independently funded retirees which may explain their physically active lifestyle when compared to the norm for their age group. However, these factors were not measured, nor accounted for in any of the data analysis (LaFrenz, 2005).
Bartholomew, L. K., Parcel, G. S., Kok, G., Gottlieb, N. H., & Fernandez, M. E. (2010). Planning health promotion programs: An intervention mapping approach. Retrieved from http://www.cdu.eblib.com.au.ezproxy.cdu.edu.au/patron/FullRecord.aspx?p=644777
Chodzko-Zajko, W., Schwingel, A., & Park, C. (2009). Successful aging: The role of physical activity. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 3(1), 20-28. doi: 10.1177/1559827608325456
Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale: L. Erlbaum Associates.
Drewnowski, A., & Evans, W. (2001). Nutrition, physical activity, and quality of life in older adults: Summary. Journal of Gerontology: Medical Science, 56(2), 89-94. doi: 10.1093/gerona/56.suppl_2.89
Faber, M., Bosscher, R., Chin, A., & van Wieringen, P. (2006). Effects of exercise programs on falls and mobility in frail and pre-frail older adults: A multicenter randomized controlled trial. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 87(5), 885-896. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16813773
Fiatarone, M., Marks, E., Ryan, N., Meredith, C., Lipsitz L. A., & Evans, W. (1990). High-intensity strength training in nonagenarians: Effects on skeletal muscle. Journal of the American Medical Association, 263(1), 3029-3034. Retrieved from http://faculty.fullerton.edu/leebrown/pdf/Files/Academic/Fiatarone-strengthtrainingoldpeople.pdf
Guralnik, J., Ferrucci, L., , E., Salive, MSimonsick., & Wallace, R. (1995). Lower-extremity function in persons over the age of 70 years as a predictor of subsequent disability. North English Journal of Medicine, 332(4), 556-561.
LaFrenz, C. (2005, December 5). Financial security: Start saving before middle age; Take a long-term view of retirement. The Adelaide Advertiser. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.cdu.edu.au/docview/355356506?accountid=10424
Manini, T., Druger, M., & Ploutz-Snyder, L. (2005). Misconceptions about strength exercise among older adults. Journal of Ageing and Physical Activity, 13(1), 422-433. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16301754
Marquez, D., Bustamante, E., Blissmer, B., & Prohaska, T. (2009). Health promotion for successful aging. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 12(7), 12-19. doi: 10.1177/1559827608325200
Sims, J., Hill, K., Hunt, S., Haralambous, B., Brown, A., Engel, L.,… Ory, M. (2006). National physical activity recommendations for older Australians: Discussion document. Retrieved from http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/B656FF3728F48860CA257BF0001B09D9/$File/pa-guide-older-disc.pdf
World Health Organization. (2014a).Nutrition for older persons. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/ageing/en/
World Health Organization. (2014b). Nutrient profiling. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/profiling/en/
Note: The document above is an example of the layout and format of an essay paper in APA Style.This document is not a referencing guide. Use the APA Style Guide to compile your citation and reference list.