How to Format the Unique First-Page Header for APA Style (6th Edition)

by VickyRN Asst. Admin

25,884 Views | 10 Comments

This step-by-step tutorial guides the writer into formatting the unique first page header according to the APA 6th Edition guidelines.

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    Writers everywhere have struggled to correctly format the unique first-page header which is a hallmark feature of the new 6th Edition of APA. The APA running header is a shortened version of the paperís title. The header is situated in the upper left hand corner of each page, to remind the reader of the paperís topic. The header is flush left, whereas the page numbers are flush right.

    To correctly format the unique first-page header, letís start with the basics. First, let's create our unique running header for the title page. We need to go to View --> Header and Footer:



    Double click on "Header and Footer" and a Header textbox will appear at the very top of your Word document:



    Now go back to the Header and Footer menu box and click on "Page Setup:"



    Go to "Margins" and select margins of 1" all the way around:



    Next, click on "Layout" and select "Different first page." Make sure your Header and Footer are set at 0.5" apiece.



    Click "OK" and go back to the Header and Footer menu box. Next, click on "Insert Page Number."



    The page number will then appear flush left in your header text box. Make sure that your font size is Times New Roman 12 point for the page number.



    Place your cursor to the left of the page number in the header text box and type in 'Running head:' plus the title of your work in ALL CAPS. Make sure that the capitalized portion is no more than 50 characters with spaces. Then, use the tab function to move the page number to the farthest right in the text box.



    Scroll down to the second page of your document. You will see the "Header" text box. Insert the page number from the Header and Footer menu box. Place your cursor to the left of the page number and type in the capitalized portion of the header on page one (be sure to leave off the "Running head" portion). Then, tab your page number to the farthest right in the Header text box.



    Close the "Header and Footer" menu box and Voilŗ! Your unique header is formatted perfectly according to APA 6th edition style.
    Last edit by VickyRN on Aug 12, '11
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  4. About VickyRN

    VickyRN is a certified nurse educator (NLN) and certified gerontology nurse (ANCC). Her research interests include: the special health and social needs of the vulnerable older adult population; registered nurse staffing and resident outcomes in intermediate care nursing facilities; and, innovations in avoiding institutionalization of frail elderly clients by providing long-term care services and supports in the community. She is faculty in a large baccalaureate nursing program in North Carolina.

    VickyRN joined Mar '01 - from 'Under the shadow of His wings...'. VickyRN has '16' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Gerontological, cardiac, med-surg, peds'. Posts: 12,043 Likes: 6,390; Learn more about VickyRN by visiting their allnursesPage

    10 Comments so far...

  5. 1
    Thank you so much for this post, VickyRN. I will definitely make great use of this for all the papers I have to write for grad school.
    VickyRN likes this.
  6. 1
    There are two really good programs that will do the formatting for you and all the other things required for APA - both have programs for windows and mac. I use stylease ( http://www.styleease.com/index.html ) because they had the first program for mac but perlla ( http://www.perrla.com ) also has a program that others I know are using. I know that the customer service at styleease is wonderful - they are so helpful, very fast and super nice. There are a couple of other ones out there but don't use them - terrible customer service - lost 40 bucks with another company who won't respond to emails or help at all.
    VickyRN likes this.
  7. 1
    A REQUEST:
    VickyRN...I would like to use this information, with your permission, on the LibGuides I am designing for the ASN, BSN, & MSN Nursing Students (and Faculty) at my university (I am the Nursing Librarian there). Please email me at <william.stevens@lmunet.edu> and let me know EITHER way! Thanks, Bill

    A COMMENT:
    As to using Perrla or Stylease for developing APA 6th Edition citations...a word of warning! I have seen Nursing students at our university (I am the Nursing Librarian there) use Perrla and everytime they do, they wind up verifying each full-text and in-text citation with the APA Manual. Therefore, spend the money on the manual so you have a print copy at hand...see Chapter 7 'Reference Examples' (pp.194-224).

    You can also use (for free) the APA website (http://www.apastyle.org) and the APA Style Blog website (also for free) (http://blog.apastyle.org/apastyle/) as well...we use them CONSTANTLY for gaining answers to questions that are not readily answerable in the APA 6th Edition Manual.

    The APA Student's Manual has a LOT of helpful information contained within so instead of shortcutting, just spend your money on the 'real deal'...my $0.02 worth...WSteven1
    VickyRN likes this.
  8. 0
    Quote from WSteven1
    A REQUEST:
    VickyRN...I would like to use this information, with your permission, on the LibGuides I am designing for the ASN, BSN, & MSN Nursing Students (and Faculty) at my university (I am the Nursing Librarian there). Please email me at <william.stevens@lmunet.edu> and let me know EITHER way! Thanks, Bill
    Yes, you have my permission and I sent you an e-mail confirming this. Glad to be of help to you Please link the information back to allnurses.com, to this blog. Thank you.
  9. 0
    Oh I have the book right next to my computer!!! I will say StyleEase does a great job and it helps to automatically have the running head and other things already formatted - just a shortcut - always verify!!
  10. 1
    Thanks!!
    VickyRN likes this.
  11. 1
    hi, it really helps thank you.
    VickyRN likes this.
  12. 0
    I have used PERRLA for a few years now. It is a no brainer for $35.
  13. 0
    This information is wonderful! Thank you.


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