FIRST AND FOREMOST All essays in APA style are double- spaced on standard-sized (8.5” x 11”) paper, with 1” margins on all sides. Use 12-point Times New Roman font or its equivalent.
The typical APA paper consists of four main sections: (1)The Title PageThe Title Page (2)The AbstractThe Abstract (3)The Body of the PaperThe Body of the Paper (4)The ReferencesThe References
The Title Page: The title page consists of a running head at the top of the page, and then—centered between the running head and the middle of the page—are the title of the paper, the author’s name, and the institutional affiliation as follows: Return to Index
Running head: READING CRISIS IN THE MIDDLE GRADES 1 Reading Crisis in the Middle Grades Jane Doe Ivy Tech Community College, Fort Wayne ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
All the pages which follow the title page will have the title (minus the words “Running head”) on the left, and the page number on the right, as follows: READING CRISIS IN THE MIDDLE GRADES 4 is truly their job to teach reading; therefore, skills that could and should be taught are neglected. Some teachers at the middle and high school levels who have been trained in their specialty areas experience trepi- dation with regards to “teaching reading.” In addition, an inactive administration can do more harm than good to a reading program that is already suffering. On the other hand, a proactive administrator who has vision can Return to Index
The Abstract: The Abstract, which is a brief summary of your paper’s contents, is located on the second page. Obviously, the running head and page number are in the header. The word “Abstract” is centered on the first line of the page. This title may not be bolded or underlined. Return to Index
Beginning on the next line, type a brief summary of the key points of your essay. Mention your research topic, your research questions, your methods of research, the results of your research, and your findings. You might also like to comment on the implications of your research—whether practical or academic. The abstract should be a single, double-spaced paragraph of about 150-250 words. The paragraph should be in block format—which means that it is not indented. Return to Index
READING CRISIS IN THE MIDDLE GRADES 2 Abstract Research was conducted to determine whether formalized reading instruction played an integral role in the success of middle grade readers. A study of research-based literature, as well as face-to-face and e-mail interviews, quickly revealed that middle grade readers lacked the necessary skills to succeed in core classes such as social studies, science, and math. It was also clear that without sufficient instruction and guidance, these students were unable to succeed academically in higher-level core areas at the high school or at the university, since textual material steadily increased in difficulty. It was discovered, however, that through the professional development of teachers, through literacy coaching, through well-implemented programs supported by administration, and through staff members volunteering to teach reading skills across the curriculum, that middle level students did have the potential to become more successful reading students throughout their academic careers. Return to Index
The Body of the Essay: The APA essay generally consists of six distinct parts: (1) Introduction (Topic – Comparison of Literature – Hypothesis) (2) Primary Research (Method – Rationale) (3) Results (4) Discussion (including the conclusion) (5) References (6) Tables This topic is complex enough to merit a separate PowerPoint Presentation later. It is enough at this stage to understand the basic structure of the APA essay. Return to Index
The References (i.e., the sources you used) are formatted in hanging indent style as follows: Return to Index The References:
READING CRISIS IN THE MIDDLE GRADES 9 References Biancarosa, G. (2005). After third grade. Educational Leadership, 63(2), 16-22. Borman, K. Dole, G. Kral, C., Salinger, T., & Torgensen, J. (2008, August) Improving adolescent literacy: Effective classroom and inter- vention practices: A practice guide (NCEE 2008-4027). Washington, DC: National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education. Return to Index
Naturally, the references are a complex issue in and of themselves and merit further discussion. At this stage it is enough to understand (a) that the basic entry is listed by author’s last name, (b) that the year of publication immediately follows the name (in parentheses), and (c) that titles are not capitalized as in most other systems of documentation. Naturally, there are distinct differences when citing books, journals, periodicals, Internet, and non-print sources. These variations you will simply have to look up. If you do not own the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, then Purdue’s On-Line Writing Lab (OWL) is an excellent on-line reference. Your text book also contains instructions for formatting references.
That, in a nutshell, is basic APA format. Obviously, the internal workings of the paper are a bit more fussy, but that is the subject of another lesson. Return to Index
PowerPoint presentation by Mark A. Spalding, BA, MEd, 2010.