APA & Writing Across the Curriculum

by Everett Wade, Ph.D

To ensure the academic integrity of student papers, it is imperative that instructors require proper citation of sources and correct formatting. Despite its value, APA formatting can be a challenge for students to learn, and similarly difficult for instructors to teach.  (This blog is a follow-up to a webinar led by Dr. Wade on this subject.  The webinar can be viewed at this LINK.)

In teaching APA, it is important to spend time in class walking students through formatting process in a hands-on manner. APA formatting is complicated, and students often feel intimidated by the expectation that they learn such a comprehensive method of formatting. It is therefore imperative that teachers stress the basics of APA without bogging students down in its intricacies. My webinar provided instructors with a concise PowerPoint presentation for reviewing the essential elements of APA formatting. In this same vein, I presented an in-class citation exercise that walks students through the process of developing their APA references page.

Although formatting  contributes to a relatively small portion of students’ grades on an individual paper, grading for correct use of APA can be time-consuming for instructors. In my webinar I provided two checklists to aid instructors in their grading process. The first gives a rubric for grading APA, while the second provides instructions on how to grade for grammar. These checklists not only help instructors to streamline their grading process, but also can be a great resource for students as well. These tools will aid in ensuring that student essays in all of Belhaven’s courses are written well and properly sourced.

This links for the documents mentioned above are available on the webinar site (see link above).  Also if you would like to know more or have other questions, please email me at ewade@belhaven.edu.

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