APA Format Dissertation Writing Guidelines For Undergraduates

You are likely to be told to format your dissertation in APA than any other style. Being the most common formatting style, most of your academic work will be written in APA. It comes with a unique set of rules that determine the appearance of your paper. Failure to follow these rules will attract penalties that are sometimes too hefty to bear. The secret is to ensure that you master the rules and apply them effectively in every section of your paper.

General Rule

As a general principle, all work in APA should be typed and double spaced. A margin of one inch should be left on all sides of the page. The recommended font type for APA is Times New Romans though any other font is acceptable as long as it is readable. The font should be twelve points in size.

Page Formatting

A running head should be included in your paper. This means that the header should run similarly on each of your pages. Part of this header are numbers that are flushed right. The header should also include the title of your paper that is printed in capital letters and flushed left. Since the running header is a shorter version of the title of your paper, it must not exceed fifty characters. These characters include punctuation and spacing.

Title Page

The title page must capture the title of your dissertation as well as the name of the author. You must also include the institution to which you are affiliated. Make your title as precise as possible. This means that it must not contain words that are irrelevant. You should also avoid the use of abbreviations. The approximate length of your title should be twelve words.

Inner Sections

The inside of your dissertation will contain such sections as the abstract, chapters, bibliography, etc. These titles should be centered at the top of the page with no use of bold letters, formatting, quotation marks, underlining or italics.


The author date method is used in in-text citations. This implies that in your text, the name of the author and the year of publication should be included. The full reference should be included at the end of the paper in the bibliography section.

Pay close attention to this resource to get more details on APA formatting style. This formatting style should be used consistently to avoid confusing the reader.