The style guide of the American Psychological Association (APA) style is one of several style guides for academic writing. It is commonly used in psychology and other social sciences, including sociology and anthropology.
APA style provides rules for:
- Your manuscript essay as a whole, including margins, spacing, indentation, headings and subheadings
- How to cite references in the body of your essay and at the end of your manuscript
- How to treat numbers, dates, dashes, capitalization, and other detailed aspect of the text
These rules are comprehensive, and there are extensive exceptions to the rules as well! For example, the general rule is to spell out numbers under 10, and to use the numeric form above. Yet there are exceptions, for example, in percentages (50%; not fifty percent), or when the number starts the sentence (Thirty-three kids attended; not 33 kids attended).
Furthermore, some journals or universities require manuscripts to be formatted according to the 5th edition of the APA style guide, others require the 6th edition. And there are quite a few differences between the two editions. So, it is complicated! And why would you let yourself be weighed down by these details if you can leave it up to the experts; especially if you can take advantage of sharply reduced student rates?
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