​Changes to APA Style as Outlined in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th Edition


The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association published their updated 7th edition October 1, 2019. Many changes streamline processes following the shift toward predominately online resources in research, and also simplify the use of APA in general. Following is a list of the changes that are most likely to affect students.

Paper ​​​Format

  • Font.
    • There is increased flexibility for fonts with the goal of improving accessibility. Options include: 11-point Calibri11-point Arial10-point Lucida Sans Unicode12-point Times New Roman11-point Georgia, and 10-point Computer Modern. Consult your instructor and follow their guidelines.
  • ​Header
    • The running head (the shortened paper title with or without the words “Running head” that appeared in the header of the paper in APA 6th edition) is omitted from student paper headings unless otherwise requested by the instructor or institution. 
    • Page numbers are still included and should appear at the top right-hand corner of each page. The font of the page numbers should match the font of the paper.
  • ​Title Page.
    • Student title pages include the paper title, author name(s), author affiliation (appropriate department, name of institution), course number and name for which the paper is being submitted, course instructor name and title, and assignment due date.
    • The title is bold and positioned in the upper half of the title page.
    • Author affiliation should include the name of any appropriate university department and the name of the institution, separated by a comma. The geographical location of the university is not required unless it is part of the university’s name.

Paper Title: The Title Should Word Wrap Naturally

Student Name
Psychology Department, Saybrook University
COUR 101: Course Name
Instructor Name
June 1, 2020
  • Title.
    • The paper title should appear at the top of the first page of the text of the paper, centered and bold. 
  • Section labels.
    • All major section labels (Abstract, References, Appendix/Appendices, etc.) are centered, title case, and bold.

Mechanic​​s of Style

  • Use only one space after a period at the end of a sentence.
  •  Use double quotation marks instead of italics to refer to linguistic examples such as a letter, word, phrase, or sentence.
EXAMPLE:
APA endorses the use of the singular pronoun “they.”
NOT
APA endorses the use of the singular pronoun they.

Inclusive and​ Bias-Free Language

  • The APA 7th edition manual contains an entire chapter on writing inclusively and without bias, which is the new standard. APA’s guidelines on this topic help writers reduce bias around topics such as age, gender, ethnic and racial identity, and sexual orientation, and encourages sensitivity to labels applied to people.
  • The pronoun “they” is endorsed as singular, gender-neutral pronouns. Derivatives of “they,” like “them,” “their,” and “themselves” should be used accordingly.
  •  Plural verb forms should be used with the pronoun “they” even if referring to a singular subject.​ 

​​EXAMPLE:

​​Each student can study in whatever style suits them best.

​​​They want to know the answer.

NOT

Each student can study in whatever style suits him or her best.
They wants to know the answer.

  • ​​​​​Descriptive phrases are preferred over adjectives used to label people.

E​XAMPLE:

T​​his disproportionately affects people living in poverty.

N​​​​​​​​OT

T​​his disproportionately affects the poor.

  • ​​Ex​​act age ranges that are relevant and specific are preferred over broad categories.
EXA​MPLE:
T​​his applies to people 65-75 years old​.
N​​​​​​​OT
​T​​​​his applies to people over 65 years old.

Head​​ings

  • Heading levels have changed. All headings are bold; Levels 3 and 5 are also italic.
  
​Level ​Seventh Edition Format
​1 Centered, Bold, Title Case Heading
     Text begins indented as a new paragraph.​
​2 Flush Left, Bold, Title Case Heading
     Text begins indented as a new paragraph.
​3 Flush Left, Bold Italic, Title Case Heading
     Text begins as a new paragraph.
​4

​      Indented, Bold, Title Case Heading, Ending With a Period. Text begins on the same line and ​continues as a regular paragraph.

​5
​      Indented, Bold Italic, Title Case Heading, Ending With a Period. Text begins on the same line and continues as a regular paragraph.
          

Tables a​​​​nd Figures

  • The formatting of tables and figures is now parallel.
  • Tables and figures may be included after the reference list on separate pages or embedded in the text after the first paragraph where they are mentioned.
  • Tables.
    • The word “Table” and the corresponding number should be bold.
    •  The table title is in title case and italics.
    • Table number and title should be aligned left.
Table 1
Title of Table
  • ​​​Figures.
    • The word “Figure” along with the corresponding number should be bold.
    • Figures now have titles like tables.
    • The figure title is in title case and italics.
Figure 1
Title of Figure
    • ​​​Figures have notes (instead of captions) that follow the same guidelines as table notes.

In-Text ​Citations

  • For a work with one or two authors, include the author name(s) in every citation.
  • For a work with three or more authors, include only the first author’s name plus “et al.” This applies to every citation, even the first time the source is cited. 
  • Examples are also given of how to designate and use a group name with an abbreviation in in-text citations.

​Author type ​Parenthetical citation ​ Narrative citation
​One author ​(Nguyen, 2019) ​Nguyen (2019)
​Two authors ​(Nguyen & Martin, 2020) ​Nguyen and Martin (2020)
​Three or more authors ​ (Salas et al., 2018) ​ Salas et al. (2018)
​Group author with abbreviation

First citation


Subsequent citations   



(World Health Organization [WHO], 2020)

(WHO, 2020)   



World Health Organization (WHO, 2020)

WHO (2020)
​Group author without abbreviation
​ (Harvard University, 2019) ​Harvard University (2019)

Ref​​​erences List

  •  The section label “References” should be bold.
  • URLs.
    • URLs are presented as hyperlinks.
    • Do not include the words “Retrieved from” before the URL, unless a retrieval date is also needed.
    • In the case of long URLs: (a) line breaks should not be manually inserted, and (b) breaks applied automatically by a word-processing program (e.g., Microsoft Word) are permissible.
EXAM​PLE​:
​​Goldberg, J. F. (2018). Evaluating adverse drug effects [Webinar]. American Psychiatric Association. https://education.pschiatry.org/Users/ProductDetails.aspx?ActivitylD=6172
  • Resources found in a library database (EBSCO, CINAHL, Films on Demand).
    • ​​Database names and URL’s are not included. DOIs are included, if they are present.
​​EXAMPLE:​​​
Anderson, M. (2018). Getting consistent with consequences. Educational Leadership, 76(1), 26–33.
  • ​​ DOIs. 
    • DOIs (digital object identifiers) are presented as URLs.
    • The label “DOI:” is no longer included. DOIs should begin with the prefix https://doi.org/ or https://dx.doi.org/ 
    • In the case of long DOIs: (a) line breaks should not be manually inserted, and (b) breaks applied automatically by a word-processing program (e.g., Microsoft Word) are permissible.
E​​XAMPLE:
M​​cCauley, S. M., & Christiansen, M. H. (2019). Language learning as language use: A cross-linguistic model of child language development Psychological Review, 126(1), 1–51. https://doi.org/10.1037/rev0000126 
​​​​NOT
McCauley, S. M., & Christiansen, M. H. (2019). Language learning as language use: A cross-linguistic model of child language development Psychological Review, 126(1), 1–51. doi: 10.1037/rev0000126 
  • Books.
    • ​​The publisher, city, and state are no longer included.
​​EXAMPLE​:
Brown, L. S. (2018). Feminist therapy (2nd ed.). American Psychological Association.
NOT​​​​​​​​​
​​​​​​​​​​​Brown, L. S. Brown, L. S. (2018). Feminist therapy (2nd ed.). New York, NY: American Psychological Association.
  • ​​​​​​E-books.
    • The format, platform, or device (e.g., Kindle) is no longer included. The publisher is included.
  • Many authors.
    • Up to 20 authors are now included before names are omitted with an ellipsis. 
​​​​​EXAMPLE:​​
Miller, T. C., Brown, M. J., Wilson, G. L., Evans, B. B., Kelly, R. S., Turner, S. T., Lewis, F,. Less, L. H., Cox, G., Harris, H. L., Martin, P., Gonzalez, W. L., Hughes, W., Carter, D., Campbell, C., Baker, A. B., Flores, T., Gray, W. E., Green, G., … & Nelson, T. P. (2018).
  • ​​​​Inclusion of contributors.
    • New guidelines are in place for citing content that includes contributors beyond the author.
      • Podcast episode: The host of the episode should be included.
      • TV series episode: The writer and director of that episode should be included.
  • Publisher as author.
    • When the publisher is used as the author, the publisher element is omitted in the Reference list entry. The word “Author” is no longer included in the source element of the reference entry as a replacement for the publisher, as in the 6th edition.
EXAMPLE: 
American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596 
NOT 
American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Author. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596
NOT 
American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). American Psychiatric Association. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596
  • ​​Online sources.
    • Many examples are now given for citing different types of online sources, including social media, websites, webpages, audiovisual materials, and etc.
  • List of examples of common source types:
    • Journal article (listed under DOI changes)
    • Chapter in an edited book
EXAMPLE (as listed in APA Manual):
Balsam, K. F., Martell, C. R., Jones, K. P., & Safren, S. A. (2010). Affirmative cognitive behavior therapy with sexual and gender minority people. In G. Y. Iwamasa & P. A. Hays (Eds.), Culturally responsive cognitive behavior therapy: Practice and supervision (2nd ed., pp. 287-314). American Psycological Assoiciation. https://doi.org/10.1037/0000119-012​
    • ​​​​Dissertation/thesis from a database
EXAMPLE (as listed on Purdue OWL):
Lastname, F. M. (Year). Title of dissertation or thesis (Publication No.) [Doctoral dissertation or master’s thesis, Name of Institution Awarding Degree]. Database Name.

Duis, J. M. (2008). Acid/base chemistry and related organic chemistry conceptions of undergraduate organic chemistry students. (Publication No. 3348786) [Doctoral dissertation, University of Northern Colorado]. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global.
    • ​​​​Website
​​EXAMPLE (as listed in APA Manual):
Avramova, N. (2019, January 3). The secret to a long, happy, healthy life? Think age-positive. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/03/health/respect-toward-elderly-leads-to-long-life-intl/index.html

World Health Organization. (2018, March). Questions and answers on immunization and vaccine safety. https://who.int/features/qa/84/en/

Referen​​ces for APA Resources

American Psychologic​​​​al Association