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APA Citations (7th ed.): Headings

This guide will help you learn how to properly cite sources in APA style and how to avoid plagiarism.

Headings

Some APA papers may not have any headings. Some may only have one or two levels of headings. Use the number of heading levels you need depending on the complexity of your paper.

Not sure if you need headings? Check with your instructor!

Heading Levels

APA style headings have five possible levels: Level 1 headings are used for top-level or main sections, Level 2 headings are subsections of Level 1, and so on.

Because the first paragraphs are a paper are understood to be introductory, the heading "Introduction" is not needed.

The paper title, centered and in bold, on the first page of text acts as a de facto Level 1 heading.

To learn more about headings, see pp. 47-49 in the manual.

Format for Heading Levels

Level Format
1

Centered, Bold, Title Case Heading

     Text begins as a new paragraph.

2

Flush Left, Bold, Title Case Heading

     Text begins as a new paragraph.

3

Flush Left, Bold Italic, Title Case Heading

     Text begins as a new paragraph.

4

     Indented, Bold, Title Case Heading, Ending With a Period.  Text begins on the same line
and continues as a regular paragraph.

5

     Indented, Bold Italic, Title Case Heading, Ending With a Period. Text begins on the same line
and continues as a regular paragraph.

 

Format Headings in a Sample Paper