Some Ideas on How to Write a Research Paper Outline in APA Format

 

An outline is the framework for how your research paper is set up and what information you will include in it.  APA format is a more advanced way to set up your paper and helps get rid of information that you might not need in your paper.

What to Do First


  • Before you even start your paper you need to pick what topic the paper will be on.  This will narrow you search for information.
  • Next you need to gather all of your information.  This is the information that you will include in you outline and later, in the paper.
  • You can also make a rough outline for your research with questions you want answer too. This way you will have an idea of what you should be looking for.

APA Outline Format

  

   The set up for APA Format is really simple and easy to read.  There are different ways that you can set up this format.

  • Basic APA:  Basic APA is set up with title and subtitle and more subtitles.  It looks like this:
    • I. James Patterson Works
    •  
    •   A. Adult Books
    •   
    •   B. Young Adult Books
    •   
    •   C. Middle school Books
    •     
    •     1. How he got started
    •   
    •     2. Inspiration
    •     
    •      a. Sales
    •      
    •      b. Popularity

    This is just the beginning of what your outline should look like. Each section has numeral numbers at the beginning and subdivides from there. 

  • Full Sentence:  You can also use this method which includes full sentences for your outline.
  • Decimal Format:  If you like using a number better, you can use numbers like this with the subtitles. 
    • 1.0 James Patterson Books
    •  
    •   1.1 Adult Books
    •    
    •   1.2 Young Adult Books
    •    
    •   1.3 Middle school Books
    •     
    •      1.3.1 How he got started
    •      
    •      1.3.2 Inspiration
    •        
    •       1.0a. Sales
    •          
    •       1.0b. Popularity

APA Outline Must


  • Use Roman Numerals for the main heading.
  • Capital letters for the subheadings.
  • Use lower case letters and numbers for subheadings.
  •  

Here are some examples of what an APA outline should look like, this might vary from instructor to instructor and you should always make sure you are doing the format you are supposed to for full credit on your assignment.  Ask questions if you don’t understand what formats you are supposed to use.  APA is the most commonly used style in schools, so I would recommend studying how to do it and learning the right way to use it the first time.  You can also get some non-expensive books that will tell you exactly how to do it and it’s great to have something like that on hand for reference.  

 
 

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