APA Research Paper
An APA research paper is a lengthy text that examines one topic by reporting on a variety of scholarly views on that topic in the writing style preferred by the American Psychological Association (APA). An APA research paper is different from other types of academic writings only in its style and formatting requirements. These requirements are typically expressed by the instructor of the course for which the APA research paper is being composed. They may also be found in the APA Publication Manual.
The content of most research papers, regardless of style and format, will be similar. They will present multiple scholarly resources on the topic they are examining and discuss what the findings and ideas of those scholarly resources suggest about the topic at large. APA research papers are no different. Students will need to devote significant time and dedication to a scholarly investigation of their topic and then present it in a logical and organized way. The difference in APA research papers is simply in the way in which that content is presented.
The first element of an APA research paper is the title page. The title page should present the title of the report, the student's name, and the name of the student's course, professor, and institution. It should also list the date on which the article is being submitted, and what is known as a running head. A running head is an abbreviated form of the article's title, and should be presented on the first line of the title page, justified to the left.
Following the title page, some instructors will require that APA research papers include abstracts. An abstract is a summary of the main points. If included, the abstract should be brief but should encapsulate the primary points of each of the article's main sections.
The body of APA research papers will vary depending on the writer's topic and field. However, it is customary for all APA research papers to be divided into several different sections that are each clearly labeled with a different heading. For instance, the beginning of an APA research paper may be labeled "Introduction," the statement of the article's research problems may be labeled "Research Problems," etc. Frequently, an instructor will determine what sections and headings he or she wants the report to have.
Within the body of the text, the learner will incorporate the findings of his or her research. Note that APA style favors the use of paraphrasing over quotation. Therefore, use quotations only when the phrasing cannot be successfully reworded, or when the author's statement is most clear when it is left in quoted form. Otherwise, summarize researchers' findings in a paraphrase. Both paraphrases and quotations need to be accurately cited according to APA style, which requires that the name of the author and the year the study was published be documented for all sources. For quotations, the citation must also include the page number from which the source came.
At the end of the document, the student must include a page titled "References" that lists, in alphabetical order, all of the sources mentioned. These must be documented according to APA requirements, which are detailed in the APA Publication Manual.
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