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APSA (American Political Science Association) Citation Guide: Formatting Your Paper

Formatting your paper

General Chicago Manual of Style Guidelines for Formatting Your Research Paper

  • Double-space between each line of type on the page. Double-space between all lines of the paper.
  • Only use single-spacing or one-and-a-half spacing for block quotes.
  • Leave uniform margins of at least 1 inch (2.54 cm.) at the top, bottom, left and right of every page.
  • Do not justify lines. Use the flush left style and the right margin uneven.

Sample Title Page

According to the Chicago style, class papers will either include a title page or include the title on the first page of the text. Use the following guidelines should your instructor or context require a title page:

  • The title should be centered a third of the way down the page.
  • Your name, class information, and the date should follow several lines later.
  • For subtitles, end the title line with a colon and place the subtitle on the line below the title.
  • Double-space each line of the title page.

Sample Reference Page

  • Label the first page of your back matter, your comprehensive list of sources “References” (for Author-Date style).
  • Leave two blank lines between “References” and your first entry and leave one blank line between remaining entries.
  • List entries in letter-by-letter alphabetical order according to the first word in each entry, be that the author's name or the title of the piece..
  • Use “and,” not an ampersand, “&,” for multi-author entries.
    • For two to three authors, write out all names.
    • For four to ten authors, write out all names in the bibliography but only the first author’s name plus “et al.” in notes and parenthetical citations.
    • When a source has no identifiable author, cite it by its title, both on the references page and in shortened form (up to four keywords from that title) in parenthetical citations throughout the text.
    • If you cannot ascertain the publication date of a printed work, use the abbreviation “n.d.”
    • Provide DOIs instead of URLs whenever possible.
    • If no DOI is available, provide a URL.