Writing a Psychology Research: Use APA Writing Format for Your Paper

A psychology major can expect to write many papers for classes.  Research is a very important aspect of psychology.  How can one understand the human mind if they don’t research it?  A student has to be able to study the mind to understand its effects and behaviors.  

APA has a certain set of rules that must be followed to the letter.  For the student who is a serious major, knowing the APA format backward and forwards is a necessary evil.  Here are the rules for an APA formatted psychology paper.

APA Format Requirements

  • The paper is divided into four segments.
    • Title Page
    • This page is the first in the psychology paper. On it is the title of the paper, the students’ name, and the institutional affiliation.  At the top left of the page will be the first time that the running head will appear.

    • Abstract
    • The abstract also has the page header. The abstract is a concise summary about what the psychology research includes.  This summary needs to include the research topic, questions, and a list of those who participated, the methods tried, brief results and conclusions. Though the abstract should not go over 250 words.  

    • Main Body
      • The body will begin on its own page; with the header included on the top left of each page.
      • The paragraphs should be ordered in a way that makes sense using bullets and subtitles as needed.
      • All new ideas will have a new paragraph.
      • In a psychology paper, the use of tables is permitted.  The table should have a title and be identified by a name, i.e. Table 1.
    • References
      • The reference page holds all the sources of previous research used.
      • The most common reference is a book reference and that should be formatted as: last name, first name of author (Year of Publication). Title of work.  Location of Publishing Company.  Publishing company.  
      • This page is listed in alphabetical order by the last name of the reference.
  • The paper as a running header of the students’ name and page number.  This header can’t be longer than 50 characters, including spaces.
  • The paper has to be in Times New Roman font with a size of 12 points.  This is not a suggestion either. To be a master APA it must be this way.
  • The paper is printed on standard-sized paper with one inch margins on all sides.  
  • The paper will have double spacing. The spacing can’t be 1.5 or 2.2.  It must be double.  There are no exceptions.
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