Writing Effective Papers II

Writing a research or analysis paper can be frustrating. A paper can be spell checked and proof read but that still will not guarantee an “A” paper. Students also have to think about spacing, headings, and citations.

Here is a break down of how the paper should be set up.



  • Unlike paragraphs in the paper, the abstract is not to be indented
  • Use the abstract to give a brief summary of the paper. All the major points
  • Most abstracts should not exceed 120 words
  • Put the abstract on a page by itself & center the word abstract (not bolded)



  • If using a direct quotation; put inside quotation marks, include page number or paragraph number if it’s a web source
  • If quote is longer than 40 words, use block quotes.
  • Don’t overuse word-for-word quotations. Try to use direct quotes only if something is of historical importance. Try to use sparingly, if at all. Support your own analysis


Web links

  • Please remember to remove the blue printing (hyperlink)

Running head

  • If you are using APA style don’t forget a running head and manuscript page header


Course Texts

  • Don’t use them!


Paper Title

  • Should be centered on the first page of the manuscript, i.e. after the abstract.


Publishers and Publication

  • When citing a book, don’t use Company, Inc., or Ltd. Don’t use Elsavier, Inc. Just type Elsavier
  • Don’t spell out the name of states like St. Louis, Missouri. Just type St. Louis, MO: Elsavier
  • If using APA style, some major states don’t need the two letter state abbreviation i.e. New York, Philadelphia, Atlanta



  • Make sure references are alphabetized by author
  • All factual sentences must be supported by a citation. Most of the paper should be factual & not opinions which are good for the end of the paper( unless it’s an essay)


  • Use author first or first & middle initial and last name, i.e. Smith, C., and Jones J.P. (2006)


It is hard to start off writing the first sentence that you will be citing in a paragraph. A good way to start can be: Jones (2006) studied nursing preferences of foreign students. Not to mention and last but not least are clichés and mixed metaphors that are not to be used.



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