Skip to Main Content

APA Style 6th Edition: Citing Your Sources

Provide guidance on the APA format style based on the 6th edition of the APA Publication Manual.

Standard Formatting


  • Use 1" margins for the entire document.
  • Use a 1/2" indent for every paragraph and footnote.
  • Indent set-off quotations 1/2" from the left margin.

Text Formatting

  • Use 12 pt Times New Roman font.
  • Do not justify the text or use hyphenation.
  • Leave only one space after:
    • commas, colons, and semicolons;
    • periods that separate parts of a reference citation
    • periods following the initials in personal names (e.g., J. R. Zhang) (American Psychological Association, 2010, pp. 87-88).
  • Exceptions for single spacing after punctuation:
    • Do not insert space after periods in abbreviations or around colons in ratios
    • Space twice after punctuation marks at the end of a sentence

Page Header (Running Head)

  • Include a running head on every page.
  • Page number should be flush right.
  • Type the entire title in capital letters. Title should be flush left.
  • Shorten the title if necessary. It cannot exceed more than 50 characters.
  • Actual words "Running head" only appear on title page

Title Page

  • Title should not include abbreviations or exceed more than 12 words.
  • Title should be typed using upper and lower case letters.
  • Center the title and position in the upper half of the page.
  • Center the author's name directly under the title.
  • Format the name omitting titles (Dr, Prof, etc.) and degrees: First name, middle initial, last name.
  • Center the institutional affiliation directly under the author's name.
  • Author's notes are not required for dissertations and theses.


  • Begin introduction on a new page.
  • Identify it with the running head or abbreviated title and the page number.
  • Type the title of the manuscript in upper and lower case letters, centered, at the top of the page.
  • The summary itself should be single spaced without indentation.

References (Reference Page)

  • Starts on new page
  • The word "References" should appear (without quotation marks) centered at the top of the page
  • Double-space all reference entries
  • Use a hanging indent for reference- first line of each reference is flush with the left margin while subsequent lines are indented.


  • Use footnotes to provide additional content or acknowledge copyright permission
  • Content footnotes convey just one idea and only include simple, relevant or essential information
  • Use a footnote to acknowledge the source of lengthy quotes, scale adn test items, and figures or tables that have been reproduced or adapted
  • Number all footnotes consecutively in the order they appear, use superscript Arabic numerals within the text


  • Begin each appendix on a new page.
  • Center the word Appendix and the identifying capital letter (A, B, etc.) at the top of the page.
  • Center the title of the appendix, and use upper and lower case letters.
  • Begin the text of the appendix flush left, followed by indented paragraphs.

Adapted from American Psychologial Association (2010) Publication manual (6th ed.).  Washington, D.C.: American Psychologial Association


The correct form of abbreviation must be used in reference lists:

chap. chapter
ed. edition
Rev. ed. Revised edition
2nd ed. second edition
Ed. (Eds.) Editor (Editors)
Trans. Translators
n.d. no date
p. (pp.) Page (pages)
Vol. Volume (as in Vol. 4)
Vols. Volumes (as in 4 vols.)
No. Number
Pt. Part
Tech. Rep. Technical Report
Suppl. supplement