How to Create APA Headers and

a Title Page in Microsoft Word 2010

Step-by-Step Directions


How to Create the Title Page Header

Within a Microsoft (MS) Word document:
  1. Double-click the header area (the upper portion) of your first page. You did this step correctly if a green tab titled "Header & Footer Tools" opens on the top of your MS Word Menu Bar as illustrated below.
  2. Under the Header and Footer Tools, in the "Options" section, place a checkmark next to the "Different First Page" box.
  3. Next, move over to the "Header & Footer" section, click "Header", and then choose the second option, which is "Blank (Three Columns)."
  4. Double-click the middle "[Type text]," make sure it is highlighted blue, and delete it by clicking the "Delete" key on your keyboard.
  5. Then click the left "[Type text]," make sure it is highlighted blue, and type Running head: (make sure it has a capital R, a lowercase h, and that you use a colon). Then type in your title. The title should be in all CAPS. To do this function, hold down the "Shift" key on your keyboard as you type your title. Your header title needs to be 50 characters or less. If you have a long title, use only a shortened version for your header. Your header should look like: Running head: SHORTENED TITLE OF YOUR PAPER.
  6. Then click the right most "[Type text]" area and click the "Page Number" button in the "Header & Footer" section, click "Current Position", and then select "Simple Plain Number."
  7. Highlight the header and page number (to do this step, double-click until a blue highlight goes from the title to the page number), and change the font to Times New Roman and the font size to 12.
  8. Note: To change the font size and style, click the "Home" tab, and in the "Font section change Calibri to Times New Roman. Then change the size 11 font to size 12 by clicking on the small downward arrow next to the font name and size.

How to Create the Title Page Content

  1. Double-click out of the header to the main area of your document.
  2. Hit the "Enter" key on your keyboard approximately 5 times
    • Note: this number is not really set, but you do want it positioned so all of your information is in the middle of your title page.
  3. Under the "Home" tab, in the "Paragraph" section, click on the "Center" alignment button (a shortcut to do this is by clicking Ctrl + e on your keyboard) and add:
    • Your paper's title
      • Note: the first letter in each major word should be capitalized
    • Your first name and your last name
    • Your course Name and Number and Title
      • For example: ENG 121: English Composition I
    • Your instructor's name
    • The date you will turn in the paper.
      • Note: The date should read: Month Day, Year --all spelled out. For example: January 1, 2014.
  4. Once your information is typed in, you need to double-space your text. To do this step, highlight your title, name, course information, instructor information, and the date, and right-click on your mouse.
  5. Click the "Paragraph" button, go to the "Spacing" section, and change the Line Spacing: from "multiple" to "Double" and change the "Before" and "After" spacing to 0 pt. Click "OK" when you are done.

When you have completed these steps, your page should look something like this:

How to Create the Header on Your Other Pages

  1. Scroll to the second page of your document, and double-click in the header area of the page.
  2. Then click on "Header" button in the "Header & Footer" section, and choose "Blank (Three Columns)."
  3. Double-click the middle "[Type text]" and delete it by pressing the "Delete" key on your keyboard.
  4. Click on the left "[Type text]," and type in your shortened Title in all CAPS.
    • Note: On your second page, you DO NOT want the words “Running head:”—that is only for the title page.
  5. Then double-click the right "[Type text]" area, making sure it is highlighted blue, and in the "Header & Footer" section, click on the "Page Number" button, click on "Current Position," and then select "Simple Plain Number."
  6. Double-click your whole header, making sure there is a blue highlight over your title and page number, and change the font style and size to Times New Roman, 12 point.

How to Adjust Your Margins

  1. To set your margins of your paper, double-click the "Ruler" on the top of your document. If you don’t have a ruler, go to the "View" tab at the top of your paper, and in the "Show" section, put a checkmark next to the "Ruler" box.
  2. Once you have a Ruler, double-click the gray section of it. A "Page Setup" box should pop open.
  3. In the "Margins" tab, make sure that your Top, Bottom, Left, and Right margins all read "1." If they don't, click on the small arrows until it reads "1" and click "OK."

How to Change Your Font Style and Size

  1. At Ashford University, the acceptable font size and style is 12 point, Times New Roman. So, you must make sure that the font on the page is Times New Roman.
  2. To ensure this font, click the "Select" button in the top right in the "Editing" section.
  3. Click "Select All."
  4. Click the "Home" tab, and then change your font to Times New Roman, size 12 if necessary.

How to Double Space Your Font

  1. For college papers, double spacing is a requirement. To do this step, click the "Select" button in the top right of the "Editing" section.
  2. Click "Select All."
  3. Right-click your mouse.
  4. Click the "Paragraph" button.
  5. Under the Spacing section, change the Line Spacing to "Double," and change the "Before" and "After" spacing to 0 pt.
  6. Click "OK" when you are done.

This step-by-step guide demonstrates how to set up your title page and headers under correct APA guidelines. If you need more help setting up your paper, please email us at Thank you!