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​​​​​​​​​​​​​Formatt​ing Basic Elements of a Student Paper

​This page outlines the basic formatting requirements of a student paper in APA (7th ed.). The Student Paper Template in APA7.docx can be used to aid the process of implementing the guidelines presented below.  ​​​

Titl​​​e ​​Page​​​​

The title page is used to provide an overview of the topic presented within the paper and any other information relevant to the author and/or institution.

To format the ​title page of an APA style student paper, use the following steps.​​

  1. Use double spacing and centered font.
  2. Add three blank lines at the top of the page.
  3. On the fourth line, write the title of the paper in bold. Capitalize any words that are 4+ letters long.
  4. Add one blank line
  5. On the sixth line, write your name.
  6. On the seventh line, write the name of your institution (ex., Saybrook University).
  7. On the eighth line, with the course number and name separated by a colon. (ex., ABC 101: Fake Course).
  8. On the ninth line, write the name of the instructor.
  9. On the tenth line, write the due date for the assignment.

Note that all content on the titlr page​​​ is centered. The title is bold and positioned in the upper half of the title page. All other content is not bold. The information should be presented as displayed below.​


Paper Title: The Title Should Word Wrap Naturally


Student Name

Psychology Department, Saybrook University

COUR 101: Course Name

Instructor Name

June 1, 2020​

​​​Additional Resources


According to the APA Manual (2020), abstracts are limited to 250 words (section 2.9). However, individual instructors may have different requirements. The abstract is located on its own page and follows the title page. At the top of the page write “Abstract" in bold font and centered. On the next line, begin the content. When applicable, a list of keywords is provided at the end of the abstract.  When using keywords, add the list on a new line and indent. Write the word “keywords" in italics followed by a colon and the list of words. Note that only the word "keywords is italicized while the list of words is not. Each word in the list is separated by a coma and no period is provided at the end of the list. All keywords are embedded in the text of the abstract.​

Table of Contents

​​Frequently required for large documents such as a dissertation or thesis, the table of contents provide page numbers for each designated heading. For student papers, this will likely not be required, unless instructed by your ​professor.

The purpose and formatting requirements for a table of contents is quite simple. However, it is common for students to encounter issues with generating one in Microsoft Word. Visit our webpage "Creating a Table of Contents & List of Tables/Figures​" for detailed instructions for utilizing Word to generate a table of contents in allignment with the Saybrook Handbook of Format and Style (2020).


Oth​​​er Details

Runni​ng Head

Unless requested by the instructor, the running head is omitted from student paper headings.

Pag​​e Numbers

Page numbers should appear at the top right-hand corner of each page (including title page). The font of the page numbers should match the font of the paper. For instructions on how to add page numbers, see the page "Adding & Formatting Page Numbers."

Section​ Labels

All major section labels (Abstract, References, Appendix/Appendices, etc.) are centered, title case, and bold.

Order ​​of Pages

The content of the paper should be ordered as follows:

  • title page
  • abstract
  • text
  • references
  • footnotes
  • tables
  • figures
  • Appendices

If any of the above sections are not required, simply move to the next section. Tables and figures may also be provided within the text, rendering a separate section unnecessary.


For accessibility purposes, there are multiple font options available. The font selected should be used throughout the paper. Options include: 11-point Calibri11-point Arial10-point Lucida Sans Unicode12-point Times New Roman11-point Georgia, and 10-point Computer Modern.  For more information, click here to access the webpage “Font" by APA Style.


Use only one space after a period at the end of a sentence.

Miscellaneo​​​us Formatting​