1. When there are only two authors always list both. When you reference them in text, use Jones and Jones (2005). When you reference them at the end of your sentence you use “&” (Jones & Jones, 2005).
2. When you list a group of authors in a reference, the first time you use them list all authors unless there are more than six authors e.g. (Jones, Smith, Olson, & Johnson, 2005) The next time you reference them you can use (Jones et al., 2005).
3. Don’t reference every sentence in a paragraph with the same source. Begin your paragraph with Smith and Jones (2005) found…. Until you introduce another source or switch paragraphs it is understood the information is coming from that source.
4. When you reference authors in a sentence such as; Jones and Jones (2005) found ….don’t put a comma after or before the date. Use a comma after the date if it is grammatically correct. For example; According to Smith (2003), recent findings have disputed…
5. If you are speaking from your personal experience or stating an opinion or belief, make it clear to the reader that you are the source of information. Professionally speaking, …. Personal experiences have been…
6. References at the end of your post and papers need to be alphabetized.
7. When you summarize an article, as you will need to do for assignments, or when you are citing the literature, do not state “in an article read”, “the article I found on ….” “the book titled …” It is understood you have read the material, don’t tell your readers you have read it. Instead tell the readers what you have found, e.g. Jones and Smith (2003) have identified key elements in a successful therapeutic relationship.
8. Avoid direct quotes in your work. I want to hear what you have to say about the information. Graduate school is the time for you to develop your professional voice and become the expert on a topic. We can all go to the source of information, especially our text books and assigned reading, to read what has been said. Instead, I want to see how you synthesize and apply the material that you have read so I don’t want to see direct quotes in your work. Very few things are so important that they need to be quoted verbatim. Give us your take on the information
9. Before you can use an acronym the proper name must be used first followed by the abbreviation in parentheses. The American Counseling Association (ACA) is the leading authority in…. Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT) is a common therapy for the treatment of …..Not all readers will know what you are referring to if you only use the acronym.
10. Proof Proof and Proof your work some more. Make sure you are turning in professional documents each week. Nothing detracts more from the content of a post than a bunch of grammatical errors, typos and bad spacing.
11. Make sure to include a cover page with a running head. Each page should have a page number located in the upper right hand corner. Look at the example on page 41 in your APA manual. Make sure you also have a separate reference page where the references are listed in alphabetical order. Refer to page 59 in your APA manual to see how this is done.
12. If you are citing something written in an edited book, you need to make sure that you cite the author(s) of the chapter you are using and not the editors of the book. When you list the reference in your reference list, you will need to cite the authors of the chapter and then list the editors and the book. Please refer to page 184 of your APA 6th edition Publication Manual for an example of how to do this.
13. Make sure everything in your paper is double spaced.
* Read the sample paper in your APA manual starting on page 41; refer to it often for writing format. Most of the referencing and the formatting that you will need to do is represented in that sample paper.