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APA Citation Guide

APA Citation Guide

This is an abbreviated guide to formatting your research paper in APA style and illustrates common citation types in APA format.  For detailed citation rules or style questions, refer to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th edition, available at the Information Desk at the Library.  You may also consult the online writing lab at Purdue


  • Double space with 1” margins on all sides.

  • APA recommends using 12 point Times New Roman font.

  • Include a “page header” or “running head” at the top of every page.  See the example below.  Only on the title page will the words, “Running head” precede the title of your paper.  This is pictured in the Publication Manual on p.41, Figure 2.1.

  • Create the header by inserting page numbers flush right.  Follow with the “TITLE OF YOUR PAPER” flush left, using all capitals.  Do not exceed 50 characters. 

  • On the title page, center your title in upper and lowercase letters in the upper half of the page.  Beneath the title, type your name.  Beneath your name, type the name of your college (institutional affiliation).    Your paper should include four sections: Title Page, Abstract, Main Body and References.  Check with your instructor to confirm the requirements. 

Title page

            Running head: TITLE OF MY PAPER                                             1

TITLE OF MY PAPER                                                                      2


Sample References, APA Style

A citation for the same article from a print or electronic source will vary slightly.  Consult the Publication Manual or use the tabs on NoodleTools (Print, Website, or Database) to create a citation that matches the format of the source you used.

You will find sample citations for some of the most common source types on the reverse side.


Sample References, APA Style


Book in Print

Downing, J. M. (2013). Essays on the father as caregiver. New York, NY: McGraw Hill.


Criminal investigative failures. Retrieved from EBSCO eBook Collection database.


Journal Article from a Database (Academic Search Complete):

Mackey, B., & Mackey, W. C. (2012). Father presence and educational attainment: Dad as the catalyst for high school graduations. Education, 133(1), 139-150. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database. (Accession No. 79777208)

Newspaper Article from a Database (National Newspapers Core):

Los Angeles Times, p. AA2. Retrieved from National Newspapers Core database. (Accession No. 1450129821)

Magazine Article from a Database (Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection):

Chillot, R. (2013, November/December). Do I make you uncomfortable? Psychology Today, 46(6), 70-77. Retrieved from Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection database.  (Accession No. 91524943)

Article from a Website:

Learning as I go. (2009, January). Retrieved March 12, 2013, from