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How to Write a Dissertation in APA Format

The student who is going to build his academic career and defend his highest degrees is supposed to prepare an interesting and original dissertation. Alongside with its content, the paper should also meet the requirements of the format, so if one is asked to complete his dissertation paper in American Psychological Association (APA) format, he should be aware about the following writing requirements.

Step One: Format the Page

The dissertation is expected to be written with the help of the Word processor in order to meet the general requirements of the educational institutions and the professor. The primary step in the organization of the dissertation document is the formatting of the page. The margins should be formatted in this way – from the top and the bottom of the page the margins should be equal to 1 inch, while the side margins should cover 1.5 inches in order to enable the student to bind the dissertation. The majority of teachers and universities prefer to avoid the use of the running header on the top of the page, because it will occupy much necessary space. The text of the dissertation should double-spaced in order to let the professor correct it and mark it in the required places.

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Step Two: Choose the Font and Number the Page

The APA format for a dissertation demands the use of the most optically convenient for reading fonts, such as Times New Roman and Arial. The size of the font should be discussed with the professor, but the common standard is 12 points, as it does not consume much space and is still acceptable for reading. The student will need to number the pages of the dissertation in the simplest way – the numbers should be put in the centre at the bottom of the page or on the right at the top or bottom of the page. One should remember that the title page must not be numbered.

Step Three: Cite the Sources Correctly

It is very important to cite the sources used for the research in the proper way, otherwise the student will be accused of plagiarism. The APA format requires the simple way of citing – the student puts the author’s name, the date of publication, the title and source from which the information has been taken.

Step Four: Sign the Additional Materials

When the student uses images, tables and graphs, he will need to song and number them in order to organize them logically. In addition one can copyright them to prevent the illegal use of the materials by the third people. Finally, teachers prefer observing coloured additional materials in comparison with the black-and-white pictures and statistics.