How to Set Up APA Format in Word

Microsoft Word is a popular word processing program; it is the program used by most universities and businesses. It is so common that sending a document often requires basic Word knowledge. Creating a paper in Word using the APA format means using a format designed by the American Psychological Association (APA). These papers are commonly written on topics of science or psychology. Combining the APA style with the Word formatting is as simple as understanding how the two formats go together harmoniously.

Open Microsoft Word and find the "Page Layout" tab in the ribbon. The ribbon is at the top of the open document. Click on the "Page Layout" option, then click on the "Margins" option. A new box will pop open. Create one-inch margins for the top, bottom, left and right margins of the page, as APA papers require a one-inch surrounding margin. Press the "OK" button.

Find the "Home" tab on the ribbon. Click on this option then find the rectangle to change the font style to comply with the APA style. The Microsoft Word default style is Calibri. Look for this word and click on the arrow next to it. A pull-down menu will appear. Scroll through the pull-down menu to find "Times New Roman." Click on this title. The style will change and the pull-down menu will disappear. Next, find the number next to the font style. This is the font size. Click on the arrow and scroll through the pull down menu to find "12." Click on "12" and the pull-down menu disappears.

Remain in the "Home" tab. Find the section titled, "Paragraph." Find the four lines parallel to each other. Click on each box to demonstrate how Word aligns the cursor for left alignment, center, right alignment and box style. Use the right alignment and center alignments to create the title page. The running title and page number will be arranged in the header using the right alignment, according to APA format. The title page will utilize the center alignment, with all title page information centered on the page to coincide with APA formatting.

Insert a header into the paper by finding the "Insert" tab on the ribbon. APA style requires a running header with page numbers for the paper, complete with title and page number on each page. Find the "Header & Footer" tab under the "Insert" tab and click "Header." Click on "Edit Header." Insert the running title of the paper and click "OK." Find the "Header & Footer" tab again, and click on the "Page Number" tab. Use the options to insert page numbers into the header of each page.

Things You'll Need

  • Microsoft Word
  • APA format
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