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APA STYLE: Top 10 Problems

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1 APA STYLE: Top 10 Problems

2 Required Guides and Manuals
Fischler School’s Style Guide for the Applied Dissertation covers basic formatting rules, such as for margins, pagination, spacing, and layout of preliminary pages. Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th Edition provides guidelines for “Writing Clearly and Concisely,” “Mechanics of Style,” “Displaying Results,” and “Crediting Sources.” Beginning course details and/or books/materials needed for a class/project.

3 Top 10: Most Common Errors
Grammar Punctuation Quoting Numbers Capitalization Abbreviations Hyphenation Citing References in Text Reference List Statistical Copy A schedule design for optional periods of time/objectives.

4 Practice  Review Objectives for instruction and expected results and/or skills developed from learning.

5 GRAMMAR 1 Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers
Using the narrative technique, the raters evaluated the therapists. APA section 3.21: “Misplaced modifiers. Because of their placement in a sentence, misplaced modifiers ambiguously or illogically modify a word.” Relative vocabulary list.

6 GRAMMAR 2 Relative Pronouns
The training technique that was easiest to administer turned out to be the one that was most effective. APA section 3.22: “That versus which: That clauses (called restrictive) are essential to the meaning of the sentence.” Relative vocabulary list.

7 GRAMMAR 3 Parallel Construction
The group leader directed that all comments should be positive and that negative ideas should be rephrased as productive suggestions. APA section 3.23: “Parallel construction. To enhance the reader’s understanding, present parallel ideas in parallel or coordinate form.” Relative vocabulary list.

8 PUNCTUATION 1 Comma The independent variables were partner’s gender, audience size, and criterion for success. APA section 4.03: “Comma. Use a comma between elements (including before and and or) in a series of three or more items.” Relative vocabulary list.

9 PUNCTUATION 2 Semicolon
Respondents were told that the occupations of the three people were newscaster, farmer, and accountant; teacher, plumber, and dentist; or optician, librarian, and welder. APA section 4.04: “Semicolon. Use a semicolon to separate elements in a series that already contain commas.” Relative vocabulary list.

10 PUNCTUATION 3 Quotation Marks
The participants rated their judgments on a 5- point scale ranging from just guessing to absolutely certain. APA section 4.07: “Quotation marks. Do not use quotation marks to identify the anchors of a scale. Instead, italicize them.” Relative vocabulary list.

11 QUOTING 1 Direct Quotation of Sources
Dykens and Gerrard (1986) concluded that the psychological profile of bulimics and repeat dieters is similar: It appears that both repeat dieters and bulimics can be characterized as having low self-esteem and an external locus of control. This profile supports suggestions from case studies that women with eating disorders suffer from feelings of ineffectiveness and lack of control over life decisions. (p. 288) APA section 6.03: “Direct quotation of sources. If the quotation comprises 40 or more words, display it in a freestanding block of text and omit the quotation marks If the quoted source is cited in the sentence introducing the block quote , only the page or paragraph number is needed at the end of the quotation.” Relative vocabulary list.

12 QUOTING 2 Changes From the Source Requiring Explanation
“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” APA section 6.08: “Omitting material. Use three spaced ellipsis points (. . .) within a sentence to indicate that you have omitted material from the original source. Use four points to indicate any omission between two sentences.” Relative vocabulary list.

13 NUMBERS 1 Numbers 10 and Above
Only 51 of the managers who responded to the survey indicated that they received formal training. APA section 4.31a: “Use numerals to express numbers 10 and above.” Relative vocabulary list.

14 NUMBERS 2 Points on a Scale
Because of mechanical failure, participants’ scores on the 7-point scale were eliminated. APA section 4.31e: “Use numerals to express numbers that represent time, dates, ages, scores and points on a scale, exact sums of money, and numerals as numerals.” Relative vocabulary list.

15 NUMBERS 3 Numbers in a Series
The greatest increase in responding was between Trial 2 and Trial 3. APA section 4.31f: “Use numerals to express numbers that denote a specific place in a numbered series, parts of books and tables, and each number in a list of four or more numbers.” Relative vocabulary list.

16 CAPITALIZATION 1 Titles and Headings
Ultrasonic Vocalizations Are Elicited From Rat Pups APA section 4.15: “Capitalize major words in titles of books and articles within the body of the paper. Conjunctions, articles, and short prepositions are not considered major words; however, capitalize all words of four letters or more.”

17 CAPITALIZATION 2 Nouns Followed by Numerals or Letters
The control groups were counterbalanced across both Condition A and Condition B. APA section 4.17: “Capitalize nouns followed by numerals or letters that denote a specific place in a numbered series.”

18 CAPITALIZATION 3 After Hyphens
Change in Promotional Reading for At-Risk Students APA section 4.15: “When a capitalized word is a hyphenated compound, capitalize both words.”

19 ABBREVIATIONS 1 Initial Use
The reaction time (RT) was recorded after each dolphin received two clicks. The RT was not recorded when killer whales were within sonar range. APA section 4.23: “A term to be abbreviated must, on its first appearance, be written out completely and followed immediately by its abbreviation in parentheses. Thereafter, use the abbreviation in text without further explanation.”

20 ABBREVIATIONS 2 Latin Abbreviations
Participatory management (e.g., shared goal-setting and mutual evaluation) was more effective in the organizations (i.e., those with fewer than 100 workers). APA section 4.26: “Use the following standard Latin abbreviations only in parenthetical material:” e.g., i.e., etc.

21 HYPHENATION 1 Compound Modifiers With a Common Base
The neighborhoods selected contained single- and double-family dwellings. APA section 4.13 (General Principle 5): “When two or more compound modifiers have a common base, that base is sometimes omitted in all except the last modifier, but the hyphens are retained.” Relative vocabulary list.

22 HYPHENATION 2 Pre and Post
The experimental design allowed us to assess the effect of the pretest on performance. APA section 4.13 (General Principle 4): “Write most words formed with prefixes as one word (see Table 4.2). Table 4.3 contains some exceptions.” Relative vocabulary list.

23 CITING references in text 1 Author-Date Method
Among epidemiological samples, Kessler (2003) found that early onset social anxiety disorder results in a more potent and severe course. Kessler also found The study also showed that there was a high rate of comorbidity with alcohol abuse or dependence and major depression (Kessler, 2003). APA section 6.11: “Within a paragraph, when the name of the author is part of the narrative , you need not include the year in subsequent nonparenthentical references to a study as long as the study cannot be confused with other studies Do include the year in all parenthetical citations.” Relative vocabulary list.

24 CITING references in text 2 Citing Multiple Authors
Arnau, Rosen, Finch, Rhudy, and Fortunato (2007) tested the effects of two components of hope, Agency and Pathways, on depression and anxiety. Similar studies have used the same conceptualization of hope to test, for example, its effects on mental and physical health (Magaletta & Oliver, 1999). Arnau et al. found that hope is negatively associated with depression and anxiety. APA section 6.12: “When a work has three, four, or five authors, cite all authors the first time the reference occurs; in subsequent citations, include only the surname of the first author followed by et al.” Relative vocabulary list.

25 Reference list 1 Eight Authors or More
Gilbert, D. G., McClernon, J. F., Rabinovich, N. E., Sugai, C., Plath, L. C., Asgaard, G., Bostros, N. (2004). Effects of quitting smoking on EEG activation and attention last for more than 31 days and are more severe with stress, dependence, DRD2 A1 allele, and depressive traits. Nicotine and Tobacco Research, 6, doi: / APA section 6.27: “When authors number eight or more, include the first six authors’ names, then insert three ellipsis points, and add the last author’s name.” Relative vocabulary list.

26 Reference list 2 Chapter in an Edited Book
Beehr, T. A., & Franz, T. M. (1987). The current debate about the meaning of stress. In J. M. Ivancevich & D. C. Ganster (Eds.), Job stress: From theory to suggestion (pp. 5-36). Binghamton, NY: Haworth. APA section 7.02: “For a chapter in a book or entry in a reference book, use the following format: Author, A. A., & Author, B. B. (1995). Title of chapter or entry. In A. Editor, B. Editor, & C. Editor (Eds.), Title of book (pp. xxx-xxx). Location: Publisher.” Relative vocabulary list.

27 STATISTICAL COPY 1 Percentages
The study found that 17% of the teachers preferred monthly meetings. APA section 4.45: “Use the symbol for percent when it is preceded by a numeral. Use the word percentage when a number is not given.” Relative vocabulary list.

Children who were low achievers and had low socioeconomic status were rated significantly less competent by their teachers, F (2, 14) = 7.47, p < APA section 4.45: “Statistical symbols and mathematical copy in manuscripts are prepared with three different typefaces: standard, boldface, and italic.” Relative vocabulary list.

29 Sources American Psychological Association. (2010). Mastering APA style (6th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: Author. Onwuegbuzie, A. J., Combs, J. P., Slate, J. R., & Frels, R. K. (2010). Editorial: Evidence-based guidelines for avoiding the most common APA errors in journal article submissions. Research in the Schools, 17(2), i-xxiv. Objectives for instruction and expected results and/or skills developed from learning.

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