How to Write a Research Proposal in APA Style

How to Write a Research Proposal in APA Style
Posted on Dec 19 2019 by tutorsindia

American Psychological Association published their writing style and format for academic writings in their initial edition of Publication manual for APA in 1944. The manual has since spanned six editions, with the sixth and latest version printed in 2009. The APA style refers to the rules set by APA in their manual to guide a standard for journals and scientific papers. The style guide was created to boost precise understanding of educational and scientific articles published in their journals by avoiding bias in language with an emphasis on the usage of unambiguous language.

Various universities and scientific journals have since adopted the APA style because of the standard for academic writing, generally with very little or little modifications. A Research Proposal is the first step in most Academic Writing. It’s the estimate of aggregation of processes that may form research.

Research proposal in APA Guidelines can enable you to gift a proposal that may have a customary vogue to convert the committee to approve of your analysis. APA Style Research proposal contains specific pointers.

Margins, Header & Footer

A 1-inch margin on all sides is needed. The header format is right-justified, and it includes the title of the proposal on the left side and pagination on the right. The running header shouldn’t exceed 50 characters; it starts from the cover page and runs throughout the proposal. If the title exceeds 50 characters, shorten it to include only the keywords.


Fonts, Size APA style need a standard line typeface, preferably Times New Roman. The fond size is standard 12. Every word should be double-spaced, and also the indention of 5 spaces is required.

Title Page

The required format for your title page can have the proposal headline placed around at the center, at halfway down the page. The headline is followed by your name with the name of the organization or university below that.



The abstract follows the title page. Write the abstract inside 250 words, and it contains a statement of the research and methods likely to be used.


The next page of the proposal is that the introduction; contains the final plan behind the research, the context of the study, the problem that it'll tackle, and also the people that it'll benefit. The section will span up to 3 pages.

Literature Review

A brief review of the literature that you simply can need to study to realize an in-depth understanding of the matter is what follows the introduction; should relate the research to similar studies within the field, incorporate a structure that may be followed within the study in relevance existing knowledge within the area. The section will take up most of 7 pages.

Research Methodology

List and in brief elucidate on the methods that you can use within the research; mention all means that from information gathering to analysis and how each will be justified. The requirement specifies a most of 5 pages for this section.


It is required to mention all the possible limitations of the study; limit this to half a page.


The importance of the research, its tangibility, practicality, and possible implications follow limitations. The proposal should provide an account of the probable conclusion and what it seeks to achieve within the field of study. The section is typically limited to 2 pages.

References, bibliography & Citation

Provide a part for all the references cited whereas writing the proposal. The citation should follow APA style; requires mention of the author and year whereas quoting or paraphrasing; APA style doesn’t have any bibliography section.

Appendix, if any, is attached in the end.

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