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MLA & APA help

Learn how to format papers, cite information sources using MLA and APA style, and how to avoid plagiarism.

7th edition APA Manual (2020)

7th edition of the APA Publication Manual, copyright 2020.Surprise! There is a brand new APA Publication Manual (7th ed.).

Check with your instructors about which APA edition is used in your class.

CCC Library's resources support both editions of the APA Publication Manual.

You're currently on the 6th edition page.

Visit the 7th edition page.

APA manual

APA Word document template

Download this APA-formatted Microsoft Word document template. Save it, erase the existing text, and type your text right into the template. Learn how to format a paper in APA format by reading the contents of the template. The References page has been formatted with hanging indents.

This template was approved by the CCC Nursing department (01/2016).

APA checklist

APA in-text citation basics

  • Use the author-date method of in-text citation.
    • Example: Botflies drop down out of trees and burrow into the scalps of unsuspecting hosts (Johnson, 2016).
  • When directly quoting material from a source, include a page number in your in-text reference.
    • Example: The subject stated she was unaware of the "adorable little community of botflies" living in her scalp (Johnson, 2016, p. 274).
  • All sources cited in-text must have corresponding entries on the References page at the end of your paper.

APA reference page basics

  • Each complete APA reference citation is comprised of four fields: 1) author, 2) publication date, 3) title, and 4) publisher information. Below is an APA reference citation for an article, broken up into the four fields.
    Pieces of an APA reference.
  • Each field ends with a period. Commas and other punctuation marks may appear within each field.
  • The first two fields, author and date, determine how the source is cited in the body of the paper.
    • Pro Tip: Create the reference page citation before citing the source in your text.

For more examples and explanations, select APA References Examples below.

DOI Digital Object Identifiers in APA

APA requires you to include DOI numbers for information sources. DOI stands for digital object identifier. The purpose of a DOI number is to make items more easily retrievable. DOIs are typically assigned to scholarly journal articles, though assigning them is optional so they are not always available. If you cannot find a DOI number, then include a permanent URL to the item. Permanent URL links – also called persistent links or stable URLs - are available in every item’s individual database record. They are not the URLs in the address bar at the top of the webpage. 

Example: Shotton, M. A. (2016). Computer addiction? A study of computer dependency [Adobe Digital Editions version]. doi:10.3648809/ade/2008 

APA paper formatting basics

  • Typed, double-spaced paragraphs.
  • 1" margins on all sides.
  • Font: Times New Roman, size 12.
  • Include a page header (also known as the "running head") at the top of every page.
  • APA papers are broken up into sections. Check with your instructor for his/her expectations.

Learn more at the Purdue OWL, or contact the CCC Writing Center.

APA video tutorials

1-credit APA 7th ed. class available

The English department offers an APA 7th ed. style course. It’s a one-credit online course. The course was developed for nursing students, but is also appropriate for students in other disciplines who need to develop APA formatting and style skills.

Course description:

Introduces American Psychological Association (APA) style and documentation, including document format, in-text citation, and References page. Includes style and documentation for narrative and academic papers. Students will work with provided sources. Recommended for pre-nursing and nursing students, allied health students, and STEM and social science students. Prerequisites: WR-121 with a C or better.

Registration information:

  • WR 128
  • Intro. to APA Style and Documentation
  • Instructor: Susan Pesznecker
  • One credit
  • 100% online
  • Offered Fall / Winter

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