How to Set up a Paper
1) Set the margins of your paper to be 1 inch on all sides (go to Margins under Page Layout)
2) Use the font: Times New Roman
3) The font size should be 12 point.
4) Make sure your paper is double-spaced and that the Before and After boxes both read 0 (go to Paragraph and then look under Spacing.)
5) You text should be aligned left (also go to Paragraph and look under General.)
6) Indent the first line of paragraphs one half-inch from the left margin. (Use Tab key).
How to Set up an APA Paper
APA (American Psychological Association) Style is generally used for disciplines such as Psychology, Sociology, Education, Nursing, Communication, and other social sciences.
General format guidelines:
1) Follow all basic rules mentioned above.
2) Your essay should include four major sections: Title Page, Abstract, Main Body, and Reference Page.
3) Set up a Title Page: include the page header flush left with the page number flush right at the top of the page.
· Go to Insert → Header → Edit Header → Design → Choose Different First Page
· Go to Insert → Page Number → Top of Page → Plain Number 3 → Click. (Number all pages consecutively with Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.) → Type your page header and click Tab key twice to separate from the page number. (Please note that on the title page, your page header should look like this:
Running head: TITLE OF YOUR PAPER
Pages after the title page should have a running head that looks like this:
TITLE OF YOUR PAPER
4) The Title Page should include:
· The title of you paper: type your title in upper and lowercase letters centered in the upper half of the page. All text on the title page, and throughout your paper, should be double-spaced.
· The author’s name (your name): beneath the title, type the author’s name: first name, middle initial(s), and last name. Do not use titles (Dr.) or degrees (Ph.D).
· The institutional affiliation: beneath the author’s name, type the institutional affiliation, which should indicate the location where the author(s) conducted the research, such as Mississippi College.
5) Set up an Abstract Page:
· Begin a new page.
· Set up a page header flush left with the page number flush right at the top of the page.
Ø Go to Insert → Page Number → Top of Page → Plain Number 3 → type your page header and click Tab key twice to separate from the page number.
Ø Make sure all pages after the title page should have a running head that looks like this:
TITLE OF YOUR PAPER
· On the first line of the abstract page, center the word Abstract (no bold, formatting, italics, underlining, or quotation marks.)
· Beginning with the next line, write a concise summary of the key points of your research. (Do not indent.)
6) The Body of your paper:
· It should start from the third page of your paper.
· You should already include the page header (described above)
· Type your title in upper and lowercase letters centered on the first line.
· Indent the first line of paragraphs one half-inch from the left margin. (Use Tab key)
7) Reference Page:
· This page begins on a new page.
· This page should be double-spaced as well.
· This page should have a running head, too.
· Center the word References without underlining, bolding, or italicizing it. If there is only one entry, title this page Reference.
· Create a hanging indention for this page:
Ø Go to Paragraph and select Special under Indention
Ø Then select Hanging
Writing a Research Paper
This handout provides detailed information about how to write research papers including discussing research papers as a genre, choosing topics, and finding sources.
Contributors: Jack Raymond Baker, Allen Brizee, Ashley Velázquez
Last Edited: 2018-02-14 03:36:12
The Research Paper
There will come a time in most students' careers when they are assigned a research paper. Such an assignment often creates a great deal of unneeded anxiety in the student, which may result in procrastination and a feeling of confusion and inadequacy. This anxiety frequently stems from the fact that many students are unfamiliar and inexperienced with this genre of writing. Never fear—inexperience and unfamiliarity are situations you can change through practice! Writing a research paper is an essential aspect of academics and should not be avoided on account of one's anxiety. In fact, the process of writing a research paper can be one of the more rewarding experiences one may encounter in academics. What is more, many students will continue to do research throughout their careers, which is one of the reasons this topic is so important.
Becoming an experienced researcher and writer in any field or discipline takes a great deal of practice. There are few individuals for whom this process comes naturally. Remember, even the most seasoned academic veterans have had to learn how to write a research paper at some point in their career. Therefore, with diligence, organization, practice, a willingness to learn (and to make mistakes!), and, perhaps most important of all, patience, students will find that they can achieve great things through their research and writing.
This handout will include the following sections related to the process of writing a research paper:
- Genre- This section will provide an overview for understanding the difference between an analytical and argumentative research paper.
- Choosing a Topic- This section will guide the student through the process of choosing topics, whether the topic be one that is assigned or one that the student chooses himself.
- Identifying an Audience- This section will help the student understand the often times confusing topic of audience by offering some basic guidelines for the process.
- Where Do I Begin- This section concludes the handout by offering several links to resources at Purdue, and also provides an overview of the final stages of writing a research paper.