MANUSCRIPT PREPARATION & PAPER FORMAT
Print the manuscript on one side of standard-sized heavy white bond paper, (8-1/2 X 11, 20-pound bond). Inkjet and laser printers will generally produce good quality, acceptable quality papers. Old fashioned tractor-fed computer paper is acceptable, but the pin hole borders must be removed. (Razor-edge is preferable.) Erasable bond and onion skin are not acceptable. If you must prepare your paper on erasable bond, prepare a good copy of your paper on a copying machine and submit the copy instead of the original.
Examples of proper page formats are shown below.
One-inch margins at the top, bottom, right and left sides are now required by APA. (Formerly 1 1/2-inch margins were required.)
Double spacing is required throughout the paper. Double-space after every line of the title, headings, quotations, references, etc. Do not use single or one-and-a-half spacing. If you wish to use single-spacing for quotations of verse and drama because it more nearly approximates what the poet and dramatist would want, consult with your instructor before doing so.
Each page is numbered consecutively, including title page and reference page. Type the numbers in the upper right-hand corner using Arabic numerals. Arrange the pages of the manuscript as follows:
- Title page numbered 1.
- Abstract (separate page numbered 2).
- Text (start on a new page numbered 3).
- Pages with figures are not numbered.
A short title is used throughout the paper including the title page. The short title is a single two or three-word derivation of the title of the paper. For example, if the title of your paper were Understanding Patterns of Byzantine Intrique, your Short Title could be Byzantine Intrigue). The Short Title is typed one inch below the top of the page flush with the right-hand margin (of one inch); the numeral one also appears on the title page. The Short Title should not be confused with the Running Head which is typed flush left at the top of the title page (but below the manuscript page header) and in all uppercase letters. The Running Head is usually not necessary for high school and college papers unless specifically required by individual instructors. However, it may well be required on documents being prepared for actual publication.
The title itself is typed in uppercase and lowercase letters, centered on the page. If the title requires more than one line, double-space between all the lines.
Within the text, paragraphs are indented five to seven spaces (which translates into about a half-inch indent on word-processors). The only exceptions to this requirement are the abstract, block quotations, titles and headings, entries in the reference list, table titles and notes (if any), and figure captions, which require no indents.
All typing is done flush-left, not right justified nor full justified. In other words, leave the right margin uneven or "ragged right." Do not break (hyphenate) words at the ends of lines. Type a line short or just beyond the right-hand margin rather than break a word at the end of a line.
The title page should have the title of the paper centered on the page. The Short Title and page number appear at the top right of the title page. The student's name appears one double-space below the title. The institutional affiliation (name of the college or high-school for which the paper has been written) appears one double-space below student name. (If there is no institutional affiliation, the city and state or city and country of the author should be identified instead.)
Page two is the Abstract for the paper. It is a brief (100-150 words) comprehensive summary of the research paper. The Short Title and the number 2 are typed in the upper right-hand corner of the page. The word Abstract is centered as the first line of type on this page. Type the abstract as a single paragraph in block format (i.e., without paragraph indentation).
Page three is the beginning of the body of the paper. The title of the paper appears (centered) one double-space below the Short Title. The first line of the body of the paper appears one double-space below the title.
The reference list begins on a new page. Type the word References (Reference in the case of only one) centered at the top of the page. Double-space all reference entries. The initial line of each entry is indented about half an inch (hanging indent style).