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Sour Cream Noodle Bake

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Submitted By chapmantammie
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Formatting your paper in APA format

If you format your paper correctly, you will show your reader that you care about your writing, it will be easier to read, and you will be more likely to pass.

APA format requirements

Title page

o running head o page number o title of your paper o your name o your university affiliation

Body pages o running head o page number References o running head o page number o citations in APA format All pages o 1" margins on top, bottom, left, and right o Double-­‐spaces between sentences o No extra space between paragraphs o Times New Roman font, 12pt o Indents of .5 inches

Formatting your assignments the right way

Formatting can be frustrating if you do it incorrectly. Some students use the space bar instead of the tab key, and they use the return or enter button instead of allowing the program they are using to double-­‐space automatically. This makes your paper look unprofessional, and it causes you more frustration in the end because you're working against your software rather than with it. This tutorial will explain how to format your paper.


The formatting palette is what you will use to do most of the formatting in your paper. It has many options that allow you to choose the margins, indents, fonts, and font size (to name a few features). Experiment with it—as you feel more comfortable using the formatting palette,

formatting will become easier. Depending on your version of software, your formatting palette may be along the top of the software's window.

Below, you can see a paper that is not formatted. The font is wrong, the paragraphing is wrong, and the line spacing is wrong (to name a few issues.) But you also see the formatting palette, each section of which (Styles, Alignment and Spacing, etc.) can be expanded so that you can make selections to change the formatting.

Look in the font palette or along the top of your screen for a box with a font and a font size. You may need to click an arrow to show the font options. Select all of your text by clicking on the document and pressing Control and A (or Command and A on a Mac) at the same time. Now go to that window and type in "Times New Roman" (without quotation marks) or choose it from the drop-­‐down menu. Also, change the font to 12pt. You can see in the image below that the text is now changed to the correct font and the correct size.

Now you need to fix your paragraphing.

Paragraphs should be double-­‐spaced, so select all of your text again (Control/Command and A), find the line spacing options, and choose the icon with the two lines that are farthest apart. That should make double spaces automatic. At this point, you should set your margins, which should be 1 inch on all sides. Usually, this setting can be found in the document settings. You can see that above, document margins are set to 1.25, which is incorrect. Below, we have set them to 1, the correct setting for APA format.

There should be no extra spaces between paragraphs, so be sure that the box for "Paragraph Spacing" says 0. In the picture above, you can see the paragraph spacing is blank, which means that the paragraph spacing varies in different parts of your paper. This is not uncommon, but it is incorrect. You can see there is an extra space between paragraphs. Below, paragraph spacing is set to 0, so there's only a double-­‐space between paragraphs.

Now let's work on our title page. Your title page needs the title of your paper, your name, and your institutional affiliation. These should be centered horizontally on the page. Be sure to use the centering icon, found in the alignment and spacing section, below. You'll notice in the picture below that there's a title again right below the highlighted text. We'll need that in a minute, so don't delete it.

Let's work on our running header. This is the number one area where students get frustrated and start trying to type in headers and page numbers on every page. This ends up looking messy and causing more frustration. Let your word processor do the work for you.

APA format uses a different running head for the title page and the rest of the pages. Word processing programs usually prefer you to set the header for the rest of the pages before you make the special header for your first page. So scroll down to your second page. Look at the top of that page, where the header would be and double click to access the header creation options.

Type your title in all capital letters (use the caps lock key). Don't close the header yet; we need to add the page number.

From the file menu go to Insert, then Page Numbers…

A dialog box will appear. You want the number to be aligned to the right, and it should be a numeral (1, 2, 3). Usually, these are the default settings, but if your software uses something else, you can click Options or something similar to access more options. Once you have numbers that are right aligned, click Ok.

Your second page running head should look like the example below. The title should be on the left and the number should be right aligned. You can press the Close button or double-­‐click out of the header, and the header should be set. If you scroll down to your third and fourth pages, you'll see that the headers have the same title, but the page numbers change.

Now go back to your first page and place your cursor right before your centered paper title and hit return until your title is about a quarter of the way down the page.

Then insert your cursor right after your university's name and hit return until the content below the university name is moved completely to the second page. Type in the title of your paper again on the second page and then center it if you don't already have a title on your second page right above the beginning of your text.

Now go back to the first page and make the first page running header. Double click on the header on the first page, and before you do anything, look at the header and footer options for the "Different First Page" option. Click that so that you don't overwrite the running header you made on the other pages.

Type your first page running header. It should say Running head: YOUR TITLE. Insert the page number as you did before, using the Insert Page Number option in your word processing software.

After you are finished, close the header or double-­‐click outside of the header region.

You now have a paper that is formatted, but you need to format your References page.

Below you'll see a References page that is formatted incorrectly. There's an extra space between "References" and the citations below it, and the citations don't use a hanging indent style.

Next you'll learn how to format the references page.

First, be sure you use the center text icon to center "References" at the top of the page.

Then highlight all of your citations (not the rest of your paper or the References header) as seen below and use the formatting palette to set the indentation of the first line to -­‐.5. This creates a hanging indent for your citations.

You have now formatted your paper in APA format. Next you will learn how to format your annotated bibliography, which uses a lot of the same formatting characteristics.

Formatting your Annotated Bibliography

Now that you have the basics of formatting down, you can format your annotated bibliography. Remember, an annotated bibliography should look like this.

The way to format your annotated bibliography nicely can be very simple. Select one of your properly formatted citations from your properly-­‐formatted References page and paste that citation into a new document.

Then type in the body of your annotated bibliography entry below it. If you are pasting from another document, be sure to paste the new information as unformatted text (Edit, Paste Special, Unformatted Text) so that the old content doesn't bring any of its formatting properties to your APA formatted document.

Your annotated bibliography should look like the example below. The body of the entries currently show the same hanging indented format as the annotated bibliography, but we'll fix that in a moment.

First, since we will need to switch back and forth between citation formatting and annotated bibliography text formatting, we'll need to make a style for each. A style is a formatting convention that you configure and name so that you can reuse the style throughout the document whenever you need to.

Let's first make a style for the citation. Highlight the citation, and then go to the Styles section of the formatting bar and click "New Style."

Your software will assume that you want to make a new style out of the currently highlighted text, which you do. In the dialog box that appears, name this style referencelist, as you see in the box below (style names can't contain spaces.) Then click Ok.

You'll see that there is now a new style named "referencelist" in your list of styles to apply, though you may need to scroll down the list to find it. Any time you highlight text and click on this style, the highlighted text will be formatted with the hanging indent.

Now let's fix the body of our entries and set a new style for entries so we can switch back and forth.

Highlight the text of the entry and then go to the formatting palette and format it by changing the Indentation boxes. Left should be 1 for 1" and First should be set to 0. Once you do this, you should see your entry formatted correctly.

Now, let's take advantage of this properly formatted entry by adding another style. Press the New Style icon. We called this anno_entry. After you have typed in the new style name, click Ok.

Now to see these new styles in action, you can type in another citation and choose the referencelist style, as below.

Your citation should immediately become properly formatted as you see below.

Now type in your annotated bibliography entry and then select it and apply the style anno_entry to see it automatically become properly formatted.

If the styles are not being applied properly, try to use the "Clear Formatting" style and then reapply the style. Remember to always highlight everything you want to format in a particular style.

You should now have a properly annotated bibliography.…...

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