American Psychological Association’s (APA) standards

American Psychological Association’s (APA) standards

Paper instructions:
· There are 3 goals of this assignment. First, you will become more familiar with how research is conducted in psychology. Second, you will learn how to review a research article. Third, you will learn the basics of how to write a technically sound paper based on the American Psychological Association’s (APA) standards.

· First, read 1 of the articles provided in MLP, under the “Articles for Paper” link in MLP. Then, respond to the instructions/questions below.


INSTRUCTIONS/QUESTIONS: This assignment is worth 100 points, and next to each question, you will see the amount of points each question is worth.




1. Please describe the background of this study. (5 points)

· For example, what has previous research found in this particular area?


2. What is the purpose of the current study? (5 points)

· In other words, how does the study that your article discusses expand upon what previous research has shown? What gaps does this study attempt to fill?

· NOTE: This introduction should be at least a paragraph. Two or three sentences are not sufficient.


Research Methods


1. What is ONE of the researcher’s hypotheses?

· There may be more than one hypothesis in the article that you are reviewing. You only need to choose one hypothesis. (10 points)

· HINT: Hypotheses differ from the “purpose” of the study. Hypotheses are very specific statements that represent what the researchers expect to find.


2. Did the researchers use a correlational, quasi-experimental, or a true experimental design? Please explain how you know what type of design they used. (15 points)

· NOTE: Simply stating that the “researchers said they used a _______ design” is not an acceptable answer to this question. You need to identify the elements of a study that make it a true experiment, a quasi-experiment, or a correlational study.


3. If they existed, identify the IV and the DV specific to the hypothesis you identified above. Please explain how you know these variables are the IV and DVs. If the IV and DV do not exist, identity the variables, and explain how you know they are not IVs and DVs? (15 points)

· NOTE: As above, stating, “the researchers said the variables were IV’s or DV’s” is not an acceptable answer. I am looking for you to explain what makes a variable an IV and what makes a variable a DV? Or, how do you know that no IV’s and DV’s exist?




1. Objectively summarize the results related to the hypothesis you identified above. (4 points)

· NOTE: I do not expect you to know how to interpret the statistics in this study; nor do I want you to report the exact statistical results. The researchers interpret the statistics in the article’s abstract and/or “Conclusion/Discussion” sections. These sections will help answer this question.


2. Identify at least two weaknesses related to the study’s research design and/or research methods? Be sure to explain why these are weaknesses. (4 points)

· Elements that you should consider include whether the researchers used random assignment; were there any confounding variables; did they use a representative sample; to whom do the results generalize; or, could the results be explained by the placebo effect or the experimenter effect?

· This section should be written objectively.


3. If you were to conduct a follow-up study to the one you just reviewed, please briefly explain how you would revise the study to aIDress the above weaknesses. (4 points)


4. Despite the weaknesses above, please explain the implications of these results? (4 points)

· For example, how may the results relate to the real world? What is the big picture? How may the results be applied?

· This section should be written objectively.




1. In a short paragraph (i.e. 4-5 sentences) please explain a) why you chose this article, b) your reaction to the results, and c) what you learned from this article? (4 points)

· NOTE: This is not a typical conclusion when reviewing research papers, but I am interested in your comments!





1. Format of paper (10 points): This paper must be written according to the standards set by the American Psychological Association, or APA-format.

· Some of the basics of APA-format include:

– 12 point Times New Roman font

– 1 inch margins

– Double Space

– Use the headers, Introduction, Research Methods, Results, and Conclusion

§ Headers should be bolded and centered, as shown in the above instructions.

· For the purposes of this assignment, you DO NOT have to include an abstract. However, please include a title page, headers, page numbers, and a reference page.

· 4-6 pages

– This is not an APA standard but will be enforced in this class.

– The 4-6 page limit does NOT include the title page or the reference page.


2. Provide in-text citations using APA format. Thus, you must cite your source (i.e. the article), and any other resources that you used to help answer these questions, in the text of your paper. (10 points)

· NOTE: This is imperative whenever referring to research, or information, conducted by others! Failure to give them credit can be interpreted as plagiarism.

· NOTE: In this assignment, I expect you to make a “good-faith” effort when providing in-text citations. In other words, you do not have to provide the citation after every sentence; however, you should provide the citation when you specifically refer to the researchers, provide a summary of their results, and especially if you use a quote.


3. Include a Reference page, which should also follow APA-format. (10 points)


4. Please write in a technical and professional style. Thus, do not use jargon or slang. Please use appropriate grammar, punctuation, and please edit for spelling errors. APA-format also specifies that you are not to use contractions (e.g. don’t). Points will be deducted accordingly.

Here are the articles to choose from:

Listed below are the APA-formatted references for 4 articles. Then, below each reference is the link to the article. For this assignment, choose 1 of the articles to read. You can click a link, and the article will appear in a .pdf format. You can then save it to your computer or memory stick. Or, you can print it out. Then, aIDress the Instructions/Questions that are listed in the “Paper: Research Experience” link.
Edman, J.L., Yates, A., Aruguete, M. & Graeger, J. (2011). The impact of self loathing on disordered eating attitudes among obese females. North American Journal of Psychology, 13, 3, 539-548.
• Link to Article—

Hagenaars, M.A., van Minnen, A., & de Rooij, M. (2010). Cognitions in prolonged exposure therapy for posttraumatic stress disorder. International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology, 10, 3, 421-434.
• Link to Article—
Kedzior, K. & Martin-Iverson, M. (2010). Association between severity of cannabis dependence and depression. Psychology, 12, 233-237. doi: 10.4236/psych.2010.14031
• Link to Article—
Nasir, S. J., & Thair, S. (2012). Anger, anxiety and depression in children with autism in home and school settings: A qualitative analysis. Journal of Behavioural Sciences, 22, 2, 83-98.
• Link to Article—