Asa Citation Format

Title page

When you are using ASA citation format, it is necessary to follow a few recommendations. Here are the tips from Harvard Business School:

  • Use a solid word processor. For example, Microsoft Word;
  • Times New Roman or Arial 12pt font;
  • At least one-inch margin on all sides;
  • The whole manuscript should be double spaced;
  • Titles should go in italics;
  • A separate title page and abstract page.

Heading format

When you work on a paper, most likely you will need to use headings of different levels. Here is how they look like:


The main difference of an ASA formatting style from others is that it doesn’t commonly use a header at the beginning of the paper. However, sub-headings are widely used (three levels would be enough).


Second Level Heading

  • Italics;
  • No bold font;
  • Title case.

Third level heading

  • Italics;
  • No bold font;
  • Only the first word is capitalized.

ASA citation format example

Basically, the ASA style is really similar to Chicago. Every in-text citation should include the surname of the author and publication year. Citation should be placed at the end of the sentence. There are also widely accepted formatting rules that can be applied to every part of the manuscript.

We have collected all the rules of the ASA formatting guide, so you can just print them out and have nearby any time you are working on a manuscript.

  1. Times New Roman, 12 pt.;
  2. 1-inch margins;
  3. Double-spaced. The first paragraph is intended;
  4. Font shouldn’t be right-justified and end-line words shouldn’t be hyphenated;
  5. Title Page is always the first page. Title of the manuscript must be centered and along with your name should be around one third from the top;
  6. There should also be a running head (or abbreviated title), placed in the upper left corner. It should be limited to 60 characters;
  7. The second page should contain Abstract, i.e. a short summary of the manuscript. The abstract must be maximum of 200 words long;
  8. Paper’s body starts on the third page (if there is an Abstract);
  9. Titles of all the sources should be italicized, including books, blogs, films, articles and so on.

Every time you are using someone else’s ideas and thoughts in your own work, you need to apply rules and requirements of a certain formatting style. Remember that all citations should appear both in the text and on the Reference page.

Footnotes should only be used if notes are too long and distract the reader. ASA uses the ‘author-date’ method, which is applied both for paraphrasing and direct quotes.

When you are using a direct quote, it should be placed in quotation marks at the beginning and end of the quote, and should also include a page or paragraph number at the end.

An example of Analytical Essay

For example: “We would achieve much more if we knew that nothing is impossible” (Carry, 2010:29)

The last page of your work is called References (or Bibliography). It contains a full list of all the sources that you have used in the manuscript. While some formatting styles require listing sources in order of their appearance in the text, ASA citation format requires to list entries in an alphabetical order starting with the surname of every author.

First-line starts with the left margin and all the rest lines are indented from five to seven spaces. If possible, include the full author’s name. All words of the entry title must be capitalized (prepositions, articles, and conjunctions are an exception). Titles of journals and books are italicized and titles of chapters should appear in quotation marks.

Journal articles should follow the same ASA citation format not depending on whether they were found in print or online. It is preferred to include the Digital Object Identifier (or simply DOI) at the end of the citation.

As you see, there is nothing difficult in the ASA formatting style. It has lots of similarities with other styles and your only task is to remember the main requirements and pay attention to your manuscript. If you doubt, use built-in formatting tools of your word processor. Good luck!

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