Student A. Sample
An abstract is a brief, comprehensive summary of the contents of a paper that runs a maximum of 250 words (American Psychological Association, 2020). It should contain a synopsis of the points in the paper but also be readable and well organized. It should be a single paragraph. To use this page of the template, simply delete this paragraph and start typing. The formatting should stay the same, with no indentation. An abstract is not required unless the assignment asks for one. Check the assignment details before including this element in your paper.
This is an electronic template for papers written according to the style of the American Psychological Association (APA, 2020) as outlined in the seventh edition of the
Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. The purpose of the template is to help students set the margins and spacing. Margins are set at 1 inch for top, bottom, left, and right. The text is left-justified only; that means the left margin is straight, but the right margin is ragged. Each paragraph is indented 0.5 inch. It is best to use the tab key to indent, or set a first-line indent in the paragraph settings. The line spacing is double throughout the paper, even on the reference page. One space is used after punctuation at the end of sentences. The font style used in this template is Times New Roman and the font size is 12 point. This font and size is required for GCU papers.
The Section Heading
The heading above would be used if you want to have your paper divided into sections based on content. This is a Level 1 heading, and it is centered and bolded, and the initial word and each word of four or more letters is capitalized. The heading should be a short descriptor of the section. Note that not all papers will have headings or subheadings in them. Papers for beginning undergraduate courses (100 or 200 level) will generally not need headings beyond Level 1. The paper title serves as the heading for the first paragraph of the paper, so “Introduction” is not used as a heading.
The subheading above would be used if there are several sections within the topic labeled in a first level heading. This is a Level 2 heading, and it is flush left and bolded, and the initial word and each word of four or more letters is capitalized.
APA dictates that you should avoid having only one subsection heading and subsection within a section. In other words, use at least two subheadings under a main heading, or do not use any at all. Headings are used in order, so a paper must use Level 1 before using Level 2. Do not adjust spacing to change where on the page a heading falls, even if it would be the last line on a page.
The Title Page
When you are ready to write, and after having read these instructions completely, you can delete these directions and start typing. The formatting should stay the same. You will also need to change the items on the title page. Fill in your own title, name, course, college, instructor, and date. List the college to which the course belongs, such as College of Theology, College of Business, or College of Humanities and Social Sciences. GCU uses three letters and numbers with a hyphen for course numbers, such as CWV-101 or UNV-104. The date should be written as Month Day, Year. Spell out the month name.
Formatting References and Citations
APA Style includes rules for citing resources. The
Publication Manual (APA, 2020) also discusses the desired tone of writing, grammar, punctuation, formatting for numbers, and a variety of other important topics. Although APA Style rules are used in this template, the purpose of the template is only to demonstrate spacing and the general parts of the paper. GCU has prepared an
APA Style Guide available in the Student Success Center and on the GCU Library’s
Citing Sources in APA guide (https://libguides.gcu.edu/APA) for help in correctly formatting according to APA Style.
The reference list should appear at the end of a paper. It provides the information necessary for a reader to locate and retrieve any source you cite in the body of the paper. Each source you cite in the paper must appear in your reference list; likewise, each entry in the reference list must be cited in your text. A sample reference page is included below. This page includes examples of how to format different reference types. The first reference is to a webpage without a clear date, which is common with organizational websites (American Nurses Association, n.d.). Next is the
Publication Manual referred to throughout this template (APA, 2020). Notice that the manual reference includes the DOI number, even though this is a print book, as the DOI was listed on book, and does not include a publisher name since the publisher is also the author. A journal article reference will also often include a DOI, and as this article has four authors, only the first would appear in the in-text citation (Copeland et al., 2013). Government publications like the
Treatment Improvement Protocol series documents from the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (2014) are another common source found online. A book without a DOI is the last example (Holland & Forrest, 2017).
American Nurses Association. (n.d.).
Scope of practice. https://www.nursingworld.org/practice-policy/scope-of-practice/
American Psychological Association. (2020).
Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). https://doi.org/10.1037/0000165-000
Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. (2014).
Improving cultural competence (HHS Publication No. 14-4849). U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK248428/
Copeland, T., Henderson, B., Mayer, B., & Nicholson, S. (2013). Three different paths for tabletop gaming in school libraries.
Library Trends, 61(4), 825–835. https://doi.org/10.1353/lib.2013.0018
Holland, R. A., & Forrest, B. K. (2017).
Good arguments: Making your case in writing and public speaking. Baker Academic.
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