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How To Write An Essay In APA Format

write essay in apa format

The APA format is an abbreviation of the American Psychological Association, and as the name suggests, the projects made for education, psychology, and science subjects are cited using this style. If you are someone earning a college or university degree from any of the above-stated disciplines or related areas, format and structure all your essays and academic projects in the APA style. Even if the university has not specified the style, you can use APA without worrying about negative grades.

What Is APA?

‘APA Style provides a foundation for effective scholarly communication because it helps writers present their ideas in a clear, precise, and inclusive manner.’ The APA style originated in 1929 by a group of psychologists, anthropologists, and business managers, who agreed to establish a set of procedure and style guidelines that would stop breaching others’ works, codify the many components of scientific writing, and ease the reading of the researched texts.

Ever since, the scope and length of the APA Publication Manual have grown, updated, and integrated with some citation directives in response to the changing needs of researchers, students, and educators. Scholars and teachers follow the APA Publication Manual, 7th Edition, to cite all their academic works.

General APA Guidelines To Remember

On a related note, here are the aspects that scholars who have to develop APA format essays should know about-

  • Every essay assignment that is developed using APA style should be typed and double-spaced on standard-sized paper (8.5" x 11"), with 1" margins on all sides.
  • An APA essay format paper will have a page header or running head at every page's top.
  • If you are working on an essay for the professional and research setups, include the paper title and page number. For the academic setting, include only the page number.
  • The title of the paper in the header should be written using all capital letters.
  • Also, the running head is a shortened version of the assignment/essay title, and it cannot exceed 50 characters, including spacing and punctuation as per approved APA format.
  • Sans Serif fonts such as 11-point Calibri, 11-point Arial, and 10-point Lucida Sans Unicode, as well as serif fonts such as 12-point Times New Roman, 11-point Georgia, and 10-point Computer Modern, are the safest font choices to curate a paper in APA style if the instructions are not clear.

Writing an essay in APA formatting

An academic essay, which is usually allotted to students during the college years, contains three main parts-

  1. Introduction
  2. Body
  3. And conclusion

Not to forget that an essay also has three significant segments apart from these. The title, the reference list, and the bibliography are also part of an essay paper. When you have an APA format essay, these factors also take center stage to make the write-up flawlessly presented.

The Essay Title

When a student writes an academic essay, it’s evident that there will be a title for the write-up. In APA style essay format, the title page includes the paper title, author names (the byline), author affiliation, course number and name for which the paper is being submitted, instructor name, assignment due date, and the page number. 

The Essay Introduction, Body Paragraphs, and Conclusion

If you are writing an essay in APA style, do not forget to add a header for each assignment page. In the academic setup, the page header usually consists of just a page number in the top-right corner (APA 7th edition). Typically, students add bullets, subheadings, and pointers to share the ideas better and convincingly prove points. APA style headings and subheadings are often divided into sections. If you would like to organize your material with headings, you can choose from several different headings.

Start by using first-level headings and use the others for sub-headings:

  • First Level Heading (Bold, Centered)
  • Second Level Heading (Bold, Left Aligned)
  • Third Level Heading (Bold Italic, Left Aligned)
  • Fourth Level Heading (Bold, Indented, Ending with a Period)
  • Fifth Level Heading (Bold Italic, Indented, Ending with a Period)

Pro tip: Don’t add a sub-heading (e.g., Introduction) between the essay title and the first paragraph. Also, don’t forget to capitalize important words in each heading (also named title case).

APA Style Tables, Figures, And Footnotes Preparation

APA format approved (7th edition) essay example generally structures and designs the title page, text, and references. Tables and figures are added depending on the essay paper. Write an essay in APA Place by placing each table and figure on separate pages after the references.

For footnotes, Use the footnotes function of the MS Word Doc. program to insert a footnote at the bottom of the page of text on which the footnote appears, or list footnotes together on a separate page after the references.

APA Style Reference List

References provide the necessary information for readers to identify each work cited in the text. Accurately prepared references help establish your credibility as a careful researcher and writer.

The APA reference page is formatted by placing ‘References’ in bold and centered at the top of a new page. Students should always place the reference entries directly under the label in alphabetical order. They can make a list flawless using versatile reference generators like or Finally, each reference's first line is left-aligned, and all subsequent lines are indented 0.5 inches.

Book Entry

Keep the author/s last name first, then first name or initial, with an ampersand (&) to separate the final author (not the word "and"), followed by a period. The Year of publication and date will be followed by a period. Title and subtitle of the work, Capitalize the first word of the title and subtitle only. Publisher details followed by a period. Example: Bentley, M., Peerenboom, C. A., Hodge, F. W., Passano, E. B., Warren, H. C., & Washburn, M. F. (1929). Instructions concerning the preparation of the manuscript. 

Journal Entry

Same as book entries, when citing a journal, keep the last name first, then first name or initial, followed by a period. You can cite as many as nineteen authors following this structure. The year of publication in parentheses will be followed by a period like the book entries.

Also, the journal title should be written in italics, including the volume number, if any. Issue number, plain text in parentheses (followed by a comma), page numbers in plain text followed by a period, then the URL will follow. There should be no period after a URL.


Up to nineteen authors, the last name will go first, then the first name initial will be followed by a period. The date of publication will again be followed by a period. Make the title of the page in italics followed by a period, followed by the website's name in the font you are using, and a period. URL of the source in the form Do not place a period after the URL or DOI.

APA In-text citations

Did you find the required quote or piece of information to include in your essay? Wondering how to write an in-text citation essay in APA format? You already know that copy

ing is not an option.

Now that you have prepared the reference list go to the main text, and write the quote or information required, proficient online essay writers state. Place the author's name and the year at the beginning, end, or middle of the sentence. This allows the reader to see where the information originated. APA allows the use of two different forms of in-text citation, parenthetical and narrative. Both forms of citation require two elements: the author's name and year of publication.

Spelling in APA

In APA guidelines, use the same spelling approved by the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary or Webster's Third New International Dictionary. For Psychology essays and assignments, consult the American Psychological Association's Dictionary of Psychology.

Punctuation in APA

Always use an Oxford comma. Place the apostrophe before the ‘s.' A long dash is used to bring focus to a particular point or an aside. There are no spaces after these dashes. An APA format reference page is easier to create than you probably think. We go into detail on how to create and cite an academic essay with the APA reference page. If you are seeking a quick overview of the APA formatting, we've got you covered here. You can always ask ‘write my paper to the reputed academic essay writing agencies for complete citation insights.

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