Completing An Autism Research Paper – APA Format Hints

American Psychological Association (APA) Guidelines

The American Psychological Association (APA) established a set of rules and procedures that codified the standards of scientific writing in order to better reading comprehension and ensure academic integrity.

APA Page and Font Format

The APA guidelines state that an Autism Research Paper should be formatted as follows:

  • 8.5″ x 11″ paper
  • double-spaced
  • one-inch margins all around
  • written a very legible typeface. APA advises using Times New Roman font 12 pt.

APA Paper Style

The APA rules state that your Autism Research Paper should contain four major sections:

  • Title Page
  • Abstract
  • Main Body
  • References

Title Page

Center your title on the page and limit it to no more than twelve words. Like the entire paper, it should be double-spaced.

Place your name under the title. Don’t use titles. Under your name, note the university’s name.

You should also have a header that simply rewrites your title, but still notes that it’s about autism research.


Begin a new page and center the word “Abstract” (without quotations). The header should have followed, as it should with every page.

In this section you summarize the main points about your autism research. Include a research topic, the questions you plan to go over with regard to autism, your participants, your process, and your findings with regard to autism.

Main Body

The Main Body has three sections, each of which is labeled and centered:

  1. Introduction
  2. Method
  3. Results
  4. Discussion


In this section, you discuss the foundation about which your research regarding autism was based.


Under this section, you describe how you conducted and ran your autism studies. You should detail it in such a straightforward way that any another researcher could exactly duplicate your work. Make sure you detail how you gathered your data regarding autism and how it factored into your research.


Here, you summarize the results of the data you gathered. Use graphs and tables that explain autism and make it easier for the reader to understand, if so desired, or, list statistics for autism. Don’t, however, clarify or translate your findings – that is for the Discussion section.


Here you evaluate and translate your autism research results, reach your deductions about autism, and tie in your data about autism to your conclusions. You may want to start with restating your questions and issues about autism and then examine whether your theories about autism were confirmed. Detail the response and explanation and anything interesting or surprising. Also note whether your research regarding autism could be improved.


Write “References” on a new page (no quotations).
Reference every source. Alphabetize and Double-space every source.

To cite a book:

Capitalize all first letters and the first letter of any proper nouns. Italicize book titles.

Additional reading describes how to reference other sources.

— January 11, 2017

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