How To Create an APA Style Document in Microsoft Word

The APA style of writing formal documents is important for students in the sciences. This format is usually used in medicine, technology, and other fields in sciences. Reports and journals are usually written using the APA citation style. If you need to write a scientific paper, here’s how you can use Microsoft Word to easily format your paper into APA style.

  1. New document. Open the Microsoft Word program by clicking on the Start button and searching for the program in the list of installed programs in your computer. Keep in mind that you can use other word processing applications and software as well, such as OpenOffice. Once you open the program, a blank document should appear by default.
  2. Spacing. In the APA style, make sure that the Styles Box is checked to the No Spacing option. The Styles box can be found near the home ribbon in the newly designed Microsoft Office Word 2007 version. For the line spacing in the actual text, however, you will need to adjust the text to double spacing. Do this by clicking on the Paragraph box. In the paragraph box, you will see a button for the line spacing. Next to it s a drop down menu where you will need to select “2.0.” this means that the line spacing will be double. If you have already written down the paper, you can also select the text and right click it so that the Paragraph button will be shown.
  3. Header. By default, you will find empty space on the top and the bottom of the pages. This is called the header and the footer area. If you want to edit the headers and the footers for your project document, you simply need to double click the area so that the header and footer design options will be displayed on the home ribbon. Here, you can add the page number, the number position, and the type of numbering that will be used for your paper. Also add a running head to the document, which will be the title of the document or the title of the report where the article is found. Make sure that you select Plain Numbering for the APA format, since the APA format is minimalist. When typing the title in the running head, you should also add the year of publication.
  4. Font. Finally, the font for your text should be changed to Times New Roman and the size should be adjusted to 12. Calibri is the default font in the Microsoft Office Word 2007, and 11 is the default font size, but if you want to change these to Times New Roman font size 12, simply click on the Font button and set the font and size you want. Afterwards, press the “Default” button found on the lower part of the dialog box.

Using the APA manuscript style is easy through word processors such as Microsoft Word. Even if you are using alternative word processors, however, the same easy procedures can be used.


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