Tips For Students: How Do You Cite A Research Paper In The APA Format?

As much as planning, researching and formulating theses holds relevance, citation as a vital component cannot be overlooked either. Most research papers stick to the APA style of paper formatting and in-text citations for practical benefits. This is not to disregard other forms, but the APA pattern is preferred over many others when jotting down key aspects of quantitative results, reporting critical details of research protocols and proper description of individuals, in terms of dignity and accuracy.

Requirements for APA citation style

This kind of style includes rules, laws and conventions established by the ‘American Psychological Association’ in order to document sources used in your research paper. Papers resorting to APA contain four sections in general- title page, abstract, body and references, with scope for few other changes as deemed necessary by academicians. Also, the style requires the use of parenthetical citation so as to locate use of ideas or quotes from others.

Tips on using this style

  • Different from the rest
  • Though research papers are framed different from creative, composition-style content, but the APA format strictly conforms to objective and specifically laid down rules. Those who wish to use this citation style, must pay attention to the little nuances of thesis framing and stick to that throughout the essay. Here is another website that will guide you through it.

  • Impersonal style
  • One of the most important guidelines characterizing APA style is the minimal use of the first person. Instead of saying, ‘I’ or ‘We conducted this study’, it sounds concrete when said, ‘The study was conducted…’ In a similar way, personal anecdotes or statements should be completely absent when continuing with the thesis. Few exceptions exist in certain cases, so it would make sense to see the APA Publication Manual to resolve any query.

  • Paraphrasing in citations
  • Instead of quoting, APA style stresses on paraphrasing the citations. There are 2 ways of going about it- stating the fact and citing sources in parentheses within the same sentence or using sources as the subject of the sentence.

  • Terms and language
  • Information about appropriate terms considered fit for the use of APA research papers and also the language of writing can be referred to the Manual.

There are plenty of examples of works by single author, multiple authors, associations and government organizations and few having no authors at all that serve the purpose of students who wish to know more about the APA style format.


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