The Seventh Edition of the APA Publication Manual brings a number of changes that will affect students. In this article, we'll take a quick look at some of the biggest changes in the APA 7th Edition.
Student & Professional Research Papers
In previous versions of the APA format, there was only one type of research paper used by everyone (students, academics, professionals, etc.). The APA 7th Edition has separated research papers into two distinct types: Student Research Papers & Professional Research Papers.
Each type is set up to address the issues faced by these very different communities.
The largest difference between the two types is on the Title Page.
Student research papers include the paper's title, the student's name, the student's institution (school), the course name and number, the instructor's name, and the due date of the paper. The Running Head has also been removed in student papers. However, the page number remains in the top right corner.
Professional research papers include the paper's title, the author's name, the author's institutional affiliation, and an author note. Professional papers still include a Running Head, however the text "Running Head:" has been removed. The page number is included in the top right corner.
The author note is include in the bottom third of the title page with space for four details: the author's ORCID id, any changes of affiliation since the paper was created, disclosures and acknowledgements, and the author's contact information. Any or all of these may be left out depending on the author's requirements.
Professional papers include an abstract by default, per APA 7th Edition instructions. However, student papers do not usually include an abstract. PERRLA can still add an abstract to a student paper if needed using the Abstract icon in the PERRLA tab in Word.
Body & Reference Page
The body and references page of student and professional papers are the exact same. Each one can include headings, tables, figures, citations, and any other information required by the author.
Reference Formatting Changes
The 7th Edition of the APA Publication Manual brings some fundamental shifts in how references are formatted (even if a number of references end up looking very similar to the 6th Edition).
Basic Reference Parts
Every reference can now be broken into four distinct parts:
- Author Part
- Date Part
- Title Part
- Source Part
The Author Part contains information about the creators of the work (authors, writers, performers, etc.). The Date Part contains the date or dates the work was published. The Title Part has the title of the work, any secondary contributors (like editors), and sometimes a format. The Source Part has the information for where the work can be found. This could be the Publishing Company name or a DOI/URL. If the work was found inside another work (like a journal article), the Source Part also contains the larger work's information.
Every Reference Type in the APA 7th Edition is built from this basic framework. However, that doesn't mean they've made it easier to figure out! There are still plenty of variations and formatting specifics that make the APA a challenge.
Citations in the APA 7th Edition have been made much simpler (thankfully). Instead of listing up to six authors in an initial citation and then truncating the names for secondary usage of that citation, the APA 7th Edition has you list only two authors before using "et al." for the rest. And, they've also removed secondary usage for individual authors.
However, if your reference has . Group Author with an abbreviation (e.g., American Psychological Association & APA), then you should still use the full citation for the first use and then just the abbreviation for all subsequent citations. For the first use: (American Psychological Association [APA], 2019), and the subsequent use: (APA, 2019).