The APA style is the official publication format of the Psychological Association of America. This type of formatting is widely used in publications of all works in psychological, social, and other sciences. This manual is mostly recommendatory for the design of scientific papers, rather than a set of clear rules. Depending on the professor’s purpose and requirements, the format of the publication can be changed. We want to talk about specific nuances that should be taken into account when formatting the research paper table of contents in APA style.

First of all, the use of APA style is often required by the evaluation committee, and its absence can worsen the evaluation. This guide is also a recommended source of generally accepted standards for formatting tables, graphs, charts, figures, and other applications to express the author’s opinion. Some aspects of the work may be made at the request of your mentor. He may require a table or work style, specific font changes or indents. 

A separate formatting element is the table of contents. Interestingly, the manual of the American Psychological Association states that such a point as the table of contents is not mandatory. As you can see from the APA publication manual – it is usually added in cases where the scientific work is extensive and requires a demonstration of the work structure.

If the content table in APA format is included in the scientific work, then there are several basic requirements for it:

  • the word “content” is written in large bold letters on top of the page;
  • all points are written in capital letters, with double space and alignment on the left;
  • subheadings differ from headings in bold or font size, and all subheadings are indented five spaces from the left edge.
  • include the running head on the top of every page.

Different number systems (such as Arabic and Roman) are also often used to better separate major topics and their subtopics. But as we wrote before, you need to agree on all these formatting details with your professor.

APA-style general formatting rules also include indents of at least 1 inch at the top, bottom, right, and left. Each page should be formatted with the title and page number at the top left.

The APA recommends using Times New Roman with 12 italics

Again, some professors may require other types of font, if not the whole document, then some parts of it. For example, tables, charts, or other attachments. It is important to apply the format you choose to all similar accessories. It does not depend on additional effects: underlining, bold, or italics.

To date, 7 APA manuals have been published. But it is continually changing and improving. Keep a close eye on the changes and use all the generally accepted formatting standards, as they can help you get a few extra points for your research.

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