this blog post). This can help you with concision in your writing. If a standard abbreviation does not exist, then you can create your own. For example, you might cite a test or measure that has an abbreviation and then provide its citation (for a common case, here is how to cite the DSM-5). However, contractions are generally considered too informal for academic writing. Introduce Them with Parentheses. Retain these abbreviations because the reader will need them to retrieve the source (you also do not need to define them—just present them as-is). See below for definitions and examples. 1). Will you use the abbreviation at least three times in the paper? in Abbreviations, Grammar and usage, How-to If the name of the group first appears in the narrative, put the abbreviation, a comma, and the year for the citation in parentheses after it. Abbreviations as Words in APA Style, very long-chain acyl-coenzyme A dehydrogenase deficiency, Journal Article Reporting Standards (JARS), Hyphenation Station: The Hyphenation of Prefixes in APA Style, How to Cite Edition, Volume, and Page Numbers for Books. Longer phrases make better candidates for abbreviation. The Publication Manual (p. 176) recommends writing out the name of group authors, even if used many times in your text, if the group author name is short or “if the abbreviation would not be readily understandable.”, Posted by Timothy McAdoo at 1:05 PM Yep, go ahead: Your readers will thank you! Example (Ezzy, 2002, p. 30) According to Gibbs (2009, pp. Audio: Abbreviations can take some practice to get used to, so let’s look at a few common errors when using abbreviations. †† p < .01, one-tailed. You might both still be. BBC). Instead, a simple solution is to swap out the phrase for the abbreviation. All abbreviations used in tables and figures should be defined in the table note or figure caption, respectively, even though the abbreviations will be also be defined in the text if they are used there. How do I introduce abbreviations? These rules and examples are as follows: Audio: Abbreviations can be a helpful way of shortening phrases or names when you use them repeatedly in your writing. Correction: The English language learners (ELLs) in my class give a different perspective. How, then, should you recognize an exception? If your reference has a group author, the name of the group can sometimes be abbreviated—for example, American Psychological Association can be abbreviated to APA. Ask yourself these questions each time you consider using a particular abbreviation: How do I introduce an abbreviation in the text? When a DOI is available, provide it after the publisher information. Although the stylistic guidelines in the Publication Manual are meant to ensure consistency within scientific writing, we also recognize the importance of a writer’s good judgment. Because of the unwieldy nature of this term, wouldn’t it make more sense to introduce the abbreviation (which is VLCADD) in this case? Just follow these guidelines, as recommended by the Publication Manual (p. 107): Finally, see pages 106–108 of the Publication Manual for additional guidance on abbreviations, including how and when to introduce them, examples of under- and overuse, and more. Be bolded, centered, and begin 3-4 lines down from the top margin of the paper. The list should also be included in your table of contents. In a parenthetical citation, introduce the abbreviation in brackets. Because of these changes and their effects on areas as disparate as longitudinal research parameters and health insurance benefits, it’s important to be precise when citing the DSM. How you introduce the abbreviation will depend on whether you’re using a narrative or parenthetical citation. Yep, go ahead: Your readers will thank you! Would spelling out the term every time be overly repetitive and cumbersome? Then, you can use just the abbreviation in subsequent references after that. The title should be provided in title case. A common mistake people make is to include apostrophes when pluralizing a number or an abbreviation. For a narrative citation, which is when you refer to the author(s) within the sentence, use author (year). In APA 6, this has been dropped (cf. Though you may choose to abbreviate the author name in text, spell it out in the reference list. This post will address how to use abbreviations in APA Style—specifically, how to use acronyms, which are abbreviations made up of the first letters of each word in a phrase. in Abbreviations, Author names, Common references, How-to, In-text citations, References Comments (54). So, what does “as needed” mean? In this second example, the abbreviation includes a word that is then repeated (as a synonym) in the sentence. Sometimes it’s okay to color outside the lines. If you are unsure of the pronunciation of an abbreviation, look it up in the dictionary or ask a colleague. In general, it is not necessary to use abbreviations in the abstract because the abstract is so short. Do not alternate between spelling out the term and abbreviating it. About APA. TrackBack (0). UNICEF). TrackBack (0). Punctuation is also covered in more detail on pages 87–96 of the Publication Manual. ALA has many events... Use only the acronym throughout your paper after the first reference unless there are multiple pages between the first reference and subsequent references. References In the reference, spell out the full group author name. I still go with introduce the acronym on first use … For example, the "about" page on the American Psychological Association site (http://www.apa.org/about/) was surely written by one or more real people. Is the reader familiar with the abbreviation? Comments (17) This means that all major words are capitalized. The purpose of defining abbreviations in the table note or figure caption is that if other authors reuse your graphical display in a future paper, the definitions of the terms will be attached. Consult Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary to determine what to do: If the abbreviation has the designation abbr. (2011). Do abbreviate: hr, min, ms, ns, s. To form the plural of abbreviations, add s alone without apostrophe or italicization. | In 2010, the estimated number of websites was 255 million. Who’s writing all those pages? Permalink For example: According to Cook-Gumperz (1986), “The systematic development of literacy and schooling meant a new division in society, between the educated and the uneducated” (p. 27). If one page number is being referred to, use the abbreviation p. for page. Use an existing, accepted abbreviation if one exists, because familiarity helps understanding. It’s even trickier when you know someone may be reading your paper with a red pen in hand! ; DSM-5) in text when you cite these discussions. If these seem arbitrary, don’t worry! | See these examples: The patient had been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (TBI) in March of the previous year. Go here for information on how to cite it. Writing out the full term in the title will ensure potential readers know exactly what you mean, and if your article is formally published, it will ensure it is accurately indexed. 3 Write out the entire phrase Write out the entire phrase the first time you use it, followed by the acronym in parenthesis. Can I use abbreviations in the title of a paper? For example, ‘UNESCO’ is much shorter than ‘United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’. In this example, the author is “American Psychological Association” and the date is “n.d.”. Use the article that matches the way the abbreviation is pronounced—an before a vowel sound and a before a consonant sound. ** p < .01, two-tailed. All of this is to say, you should work towards a balanced use of abbreviations, using them to help you achieve concision but not using them so much that they become difficult for your reader. You are not obligated to abbreviate the name of a group author, but you can if the abbreviation would help avoid cumbersome repetition and will appear more than three times in the paper. Below are some guidelines to use in citing the most recent edition. Clear enough, but note that the Manual says “you probably serve the reader best” by doing this. A similar rule in section 4.29 on page 110 applies to abbreviations. Correction: ELLs are thus a valuable addition to classes. We’d love to hear from you! • The purpose of the introduction is the same as any research paper: in one to two paragraphs, briefly introduce and state the issue to be examined. If an abbreviation does not appear in the dictionary, you should define it. APA format is a specific writing style used to … Consider it an FAQ about abbreviations! Correction: Often ELLs have different experiences they can expose other students to.”. And, how should you cite them in APA Style? If you won’t use it three times, then spell out the term every time. When you use an abbreviation in both the abstract and the text, define it in both places upon first use. Instead, define the abbreviation the first time you use it in the text. For instance, writing “the 1960’s” when referring to that entire decade is incorrect; instead, one should write “the 1960s.” The same rule applies to the plural form of any other type of number, such as describing someone’s age (e.g. Contractions are mostly used to simplify common pronoun/verb combinations. Not all abbreviations need to be defined. Are there other examples from the Publication Manual where you think flexibility is important? Then, in any subsequent use of that phrase or name, only use the abbreviation. If you’ve mastered the fine points of APA Style throughout a manuscript, your choices will be recognized as careful decisions, not oversights. If there are multiple pages use pp. We’d love to hear from you! | Abstract. | So be sure to display your in-depth knowledge of APA Style in all other areas of your paper: The. Use an abbreviation at least three times in a paper if you are going to use it at all. | Finally, in our third example, the abbreviation wasn’t used at all, even though it had already been introduced. 241–243. Apostrophes are generally used in contractions and to indicate the possessive case, but they are not used to form plurals of numbers and abbreviations in APA Style. Let’s look at our examples. That translates to a staggering number of individual webpages. 2. Depending on your sentence construction, these could appear separately or together. 241–243. Posted by Timothy McAdoo at 12:36 PM Posted by David Becker at 4:33 PM If an abbreviation has multiple pronunciations, use the first one shown in the dictionary entry. Often ELL students have different experiences they can expose other students to. Citations In your text, use the author–date format for citations. There is no official guidance on whether to use abbreviations in the running head. We recommend that you avoid them—for example, the reader may skim the paper before reading it in full, and abbreviations in headings may be difficult to understand out of context. Use abbreviations sparingly and only when they will help readers understand your work. Additionally, many readers will skim an article before reading it closely, and defining abbreviations in tables and figures will allow the readers to understand the abbreviations immediately. Permalink And if you have created an identity-concealing label for a participant, use a period after each letter. Visual: Screen opens to a background image with a person typing on a laptop and a notebook and pencil, along with the Walden University Writing Center logo. Permalink 3. On receipt, the journal editor may give the manuscript a preliminary read to ensure that it generally adheres to APA Style, that the content is within the purview of the journal, and that the type of article (e.g., empirical study, theoretical review) is The introduction starts out broad (but not too broad!) For example: In the fall, he plans to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). In this first example, the way the abbreviation is introduced is switched; the abbreviation should be in parentheses, rather than the other way around. Pluralize Numbers and Abbreviations Without Apostrophes, How Do You Spell IQ? In general, use an abbreviation if (a) it is conventional and readers are likely to be more familiar with the abbreviation than with the complete form and (b) considerable space can be saved and cumbersome repetition avoided. | The DSM has gone through five revisions since it was first published in 1952, and each of those revisions has included substantial changes in structure and definitions. It is generally referred to as the APA style ’. Generally, do not use periods in abbreviations. where you think flexibility is important? APA in-text citations usually consist of three parts: author, year published, and page or paragraph number. What to Include in an APA Appendix. Instead, spell out the full name of the group. That is, the “who” in your reference is a group author. | | “the other APA”), the DSM provides a set of common criteria and language for talking about dysfunctions of the mind and emotions. Some abbreviations are pronounced as words (e.g., RAM), and some abbreviations are pronounced letter-by-letter, which is also called an initialism (e.g., HMO, IQ). Because of the unwieldy nature of this term, wouldn’t it make more sense to introduce the abbreviation (which is VLCADD) in this case? The first time you use an abbreviation, it’s important to spell out the full term and put the abbreviation in parentheses. Lines are drawn from each example with a note about why each is wrong (listed in a). To use abbreviations, you’ll first want to spell out the phrase or name, followed by the abbreviation in parentheses. You won’t have to phone a friend each time you consider using an abbreviation. kgs., CDs, Eds. How do I present an abbreviation in conjunction with an in-text citation? Ask us in a comment! For example: Smith (2018) found...; Parenthetical: For a parenthetical citation, which is when you refer to the author(s) after the idea is presented, use (author, year). Dollars and sense: Talking to your children about the economy. Do not use back-to-back parentheses. Some of these have been fairly controversial, such as the attempt to remove the term neurosis from DSM-III and the varying treatment of sexual disorders. It’s even trickier when you know someone may be reading your paper with a red pen in hand! Additionally, you don’t want to overuse abbreviations, because then you may be asking the reader to keep track of multiple abbreviations in their head at the same time, and your writing could then become difficult for a reader to follow. However, if the abbreviation would help the reader recognize a term or find your article via search, then it is permissible to include an abbreviation in the abstract, even if it is not used three times. For more information, take a look at our other posts on punctuation in APA Style. These exceptions are words for which the abbreviated forms have become commonplace. are meant to ensure consistency within scientific writing, we also recognize the importance of a writer’s good judgment. Abbreviations If you include the citation many times in your paper, you might want to abbreviate the group author name. Introduce the quotation with a signal phrase that includes the author's last name followed by the date of publication in parentheses. Then, for any subsequent citations, simply use the abbreviation in place of the group author’s full name. With a narrative citation, introduce the abbreviation in parentheses with the publication year. The introduction of an APA-style paper is the most difficult to write. The Publication Manual does not offer official guidance on whether to use abbreviations in headings. Deleted letters are replaced by an apostrophe. The trick is knowing when it’s okay to do your own thing. If you only use a few abbreviations, you don’t need to include a list—follow the guidance below on how to define abbreviations within the text. The ELLs (English Language Learners) in my class give a different perspective. Comments (15). 4 Use only the acronym only | Avoid using abbreviations in a title. If you’re still concerned, you might discuss your paper and the APA Style guidelines with your teacher or advisor. People sometimes think there is no need to introduc… Acronyms are pronounced as one word (e.g. We recommend that you avoid them, unless the abbreviation is well-known and there is no alternative running head that would be better. If you need to distinguish between two-tailed and one-tailed tests in the same table, use asterisks for two-tailed p values and an alternate symbol (such as daggers) for one-tailed p values. And, of course, please feel free to comment on this post or contact us with any of your style questions. Below the title are two rules for acronyms. This is often the case for white papers, press releases, and information pages (e.g., “About Us”) on company websites.
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