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APA Style

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David Petersen

on 21 January 2014

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Transcript of APA Style

APA Style
for Nursing
Navigating APA format and citations for Nursing papers
David Petersen
Lincoln Memorial University
APA Basics
Use active voice
Be concise
Avoid bias in your language
Two places to identify sources:
In-text citations
Reference list
Both are mandatory and styles differ
APA Writing
Use standard 8.5" x 11" paper
Use 1" margins--Word's default
Use 12 pt. Times New Roman font
Put page numbers in top right corner
More APA Writing Style
Double space text
No breaks between sections or paragraphs; beware of Word's default
Use quotation marks for less than 40 words; use block quotes for 40 or more words
Block quotes are indented and double spaced
On Page 1 :

On Page 2 and subsequent pages :

Capitalization in the paper

Capitalize major words in title and headings within the paper
Sample :
Nursing : A Profession that Offers Opportunities
Notice that we capitalized "A" --after colon
These rules do NOT hold true for references
APA Headings

APA features five headings; however, you probably won't need to use all of them
Think of this like an outline
Title of paper is not a heading
Introduction of paper doesn't use a heading
Example :
Citing references in text
Basic parenthetical format :
(Myers, 2009).
Fewer than six authors :
(Myers, Wolfe, Jones, & White, 2005).
If using citation again--
(Myers et al., 2005).
Six or more authors :
(Adams et al., 2004).
APA uses in-text citations
Citations always go before the period!
For first time citations :
Basic non-parenthetical format :
Myers (2009) claimed that...
Fewer than six authors :
Myers, Gregg, & Jones (2001) claimed that...
If using a citation again--
Myers et al. (2001) claimed that...
Six or more authors :
Brown et al. (2001) claimed...
Other in-text citation examples
No author listed
Generally use the title
Nursing Made Easy (2001) claims...
OR :
The study found....(Nursing Made Easy, 2001).
If there is a group author :
American Psychological Association (2001) found...
OR :
The study found...(American Psychological Association, 2001).
If you have two authors with the same last name :
Use their first and (if applicable) middle initials
C.D. Adams (2001) and B.E. Adams (2004) discuss...
Studies show that...(C.D. Adams, 2001; B.E. Adams, 2004).
Multiple sources --separate with semicolon:
(Meyers, 2001; Jones, 2003)
Quote examples :
Remember--quotes must include page number!
If the quote is fewer than 40 words, use quotation marks:

Jones (1992) found that "most people do not have adequate education on antibiotics" (p. 302).

For more than 40 words, a block quote is required; make sure to double space and indent
Note that citation info goes OUTSIDE the period

A modest increase in the evaluation of nurses was required to fully satisfy federal requirements. The impact of these new requirements can not be fully ascertained at this time, but it is reasonably certain that hospital will incur greater educational costs. (Jones, 1992, p. 401)

Reference List Pt. 1
The point of your in-text citations is to refer people to the reference list
Reference list contains the full citations
Title the page "References" --center, not bold
Double space
Order alphabetically by author
Hanging indent--one half inch
Example reference list
When do you need to cite?
If it is a quote, paraphrase or someone's idea/theory
Any time you rely on someone's information
No need to cite if common knowledge
Basic facts that are well known
Any time you rely on someone's information
When in doubt, cite the source

What is APA Style?
Governed by the American Psychological Association (APA)--6th ed.
In-text citations with reference list
No author first or middle names
Petersen, D.W.
Used in a variety of disciplines :
Nursing (most departments)

Northwestern University gives the following examples:

Direct plagiarism: directly lifting the text

Mosaic: borrowed phrases, ideas, and opinions

Paraphrase: direct summarizing of text

Insufficient acknowledgment: not giving full credit for all ideas


Northwestern University Office of the Provost. (2013).
How to avoid plagiarism
. Retrieved from
Reference list points
Do italicize:
Journal title
Web page

Do capitalize:
Journal name
Author's last name
City/state initials/country

Do not italicize:
Book chapters
Journal articles

Do not capitalize:
Book title
Article title
Book chapter title

More reference list points
Basic book format:

Adams, D.C. (2011).
Nursing in today's world
Lexington, KY: University of Kentucky Press.

Publication format:
Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press.
Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
DOI Numbers
DOI= Digital Object Identifier
Permanent address for an online article
APA specifies that you must list the DOI number when available
Not all articles will have a DOI number, but most online articles do
Sometimes you will need to search in Google or other places to find the DOI number
Angeli, E., Wagner, J., Lawrick, E., Moore, K., Anderson, M., Soderlund, L., & Brizee, A. (2010, May 5).
General format
. Retrieved from http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/

Final Reminders
APA style is a science as well as an art
There will be strange circumstances
Not every case is listed in APA Manual
Adhere to general APA format and give enough info for a person to find the source

Other Resources
LMU Nursing Department APA Sheet
APA Manual, 6th ed.
Purdue OWL for APA: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/

Contact me:

David Petersen
Office: 2nd floor library--Health Sciences Library

Title Page/Abstract
First page
Include running head, title, author name(s), and institutional affiliation
Center title in upper half of page
Do not bold or abbreviate
If used, abstract goes on second page
Max 250 words (one page)
Usually one paragraph
A Quick Note
Always check your syllabus and follow your professor's instructions!
Reference List Pt. 2
What you cite in-text must also appear here, except for personal correspondence
Otherwise, do not list anything in the reference list that is not an in-text citation
For authors:
Smith, D.W. --one author
Smith, D.W., & Bates, J.D. --two authors
Smith, DW., Bates, J.D., & Jones, A.M. --three to seven authors
More than seven authors? List first 6 authors, use ellipses, than final author's name:
Jones, J.D., Reynolds, B.M., Smith, D.W., Ames, C.W., Anderson, S.A., Ross, E.H., . . . Adams, C.D.
Reference list points ctd.
If no identifiable author, begin with title
If no author is given and the material is produced by a corporate agency, use the agency as the author-- National Institutes of Health
But my article doesn't have a DOI?
Use this format :
Smith, D.W. Nursing in today's world.
(2). Retrieved from http://www.nursingtimes.com/48/2/smith.htm
Parts of an APA Paper
Four basic parts:
Title page
Abstract (if necessary)
Reference list
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