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Formatting an APA-Style Header in Microsoft Word

  1. Go to the View tab and select Print Layout on the left side.
  2. Double-click header area on page 1.
  3. Header and Footer Tools Design tab shows up; select checkbox for “Different First Page” within Options group.
  4. Find Page Number in the Insert tab, choose “Top of Page,” and pick the image where the page number is placed on the right margin.
  5. Double-click on header area on page 1, place the cursor in front of the page number, and type “Running head:” and then the title in all caps (if your title is more than 50 characters with spaces, abbreviate it). Hit Tab on your keyboard after the title. If the title is still not on the left margin,
    1. check that it is left-aligned (Home tab)
    2. check whether there is a first-line indent specified by going to the View tab and selecting the Ruler checkbox. This will make the ruler visible, and on it a small square, an upward pointing triangle over the square, and a downward pointing triangle above. If the downward pointing triangle is located further toward the middle of the page than the rest, it means that you have a first-line indent, which you do not want. Grab and drag that triangle to meet the upward pointing one with its tip. Your title should now be flush with the left margin.
  6. If the page number is not aligned with the right margin, you should add a right tab mark to the ruler. On the very left side of your window, same height as the ruler, you will see a little “L” shape. If you click it twice, it should turn into a reverse “L” shape, which represents a right tab. Double-click on the ruler as far right as possible—this should bring up the tab dialogue box. You can now specify the exact position of your tab, which should be flush with the right margin. If you end up with two little reverse “L” shapes, just drag the one further to the left off the ruler and let go of it. Your page number should now be flush with the right margin.
  7. Go to page 2, double-click the header area, and go through steps 4 to 6 again, but without typing “Running head:” in front of the title.
  8. You should now have a correctly formatted header for your APA paper.