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SPAG: Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar: APA Style

Tips to improve and correct common errors in academic and formal writing.

Document style

More about document style

Use APA document style.

Why? Because

There are a number of common document styles.

Different styles reflect the needs and conventions in different fields. If you learn to use one style, you can learn the others if you need to.

APA (American Psychological Association) style is the one most commonly used by professionals in the majority of fields we study at LDSBC. Therefore we use it throughout the College.

The Writing Center has handouts, including one showing how to format an APA document without a cover page.

To learn more, see:

Citation Style

More about citation style

Use APA citation style.

This means you will have

  • Correctly formatted in-text citations
  • Proper use of quotes and paraphrasing
  • A correctly formatted references list at the end of the document for any sources outside of your own thinking or the comments of people you interview directly, who you will credit within your text.

If you can play a board game, you can figure out citations.

To learn more, see:

Writing Center handouts

LDSBC Librarians and APA clinics


Titles of your own writing

More about titles of your own writing

Titles of your own writing should be appropriate to the content.

Title should "preview" the work.

Capitalize all words "of four letters or more" (according to APA style).

This includes the second parts of hyphenated words.

Titles do not end with periods.

Titles only include quotation marks around quoted materials.

These rules do not apply to titles of other people's works cited in the References section of you papers. Use the APA rules for those titles.

To learn more, see: