Citation

APA Format: Using Tables and Figures

This information is based on the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Sixth Edition,2010. For specific recommendations, see Section 5.19: Table Checklist, p. 150, or see Section 5.30: Figure Checklist, p. 167.

 

Tables

The purpose of tables is to present data in the paper, especially directly relevant information that would be hard to explain in written text.

Tables in research papers may be produced in three ways:

  • Create a table with original data
  • Design a table from published data you have gathered
  • Copy a table you have found in your research

Tables are characterized by a row-column formation. Some general terms and strategies can be helpful when using tables:

  • When a paper contains both tables and figures, number each separately; e.g.: Table 1, Figure 1, Table 2
  • Table number: Tables are numbered using Arabic numerals consecutively throughout the paper; e.g.: Table 1, Table 2, etc. Table numbers are located on the left above the table and title in non-italicized text.
  • Table title: The title should concisely describe the content of the table. The title is italicized and located on the left above the table, with all important words capitalized; e.g.: Predictors of Reaction Times
  • Horizontal lines are placed above and below the table, as well as below all column headings. Vertical lines are generally not used. See p. 141 of the Publication Manual for more guidance.
  • Tables in APA are generally placed after the References page but before figures and appendices. Consult your instructor for preferred table placement.

Refer to tables within the text of your paper. Provide a parenthetical insertion within the text of the paper at the point where you wish the reader to refer to the table; e.g.: (see Table 1).

If you are not using original data, a source citation must be included.

  

Example: 

Table 1

Risk for Lung Cancer in Canadian Women Based on Material Exposure


Environmental exposure                  Cases (N)            Controls (N)         Age and province adjusted OR                                                                                                            (95% CI)


Asbestos                                            4                        6                        2.1 (0.6-7.9

Mineral, cutting or lubricating oil           2                        6                        1.1 (0.2-5.5)

Pesticides                                          11                       24                      1.6 (0.7-3.3)

Herbicides                                          9                        18                      1.6 (0.7-3.8)

Radiation sources                                6                        9                       2.0 (0.7-5.9)

Wood dust                                          8                        24                      1.0 (0.4-2.3)


Note. OR = odds ratio; CI = confidence interval. Adapted from “Risks for Lung Cancer among Canadian Women Who Have Never Smoked,” by J. Hu, Y. Mao, D. Dryer, and K. White, 2002, Cancer Detection and Prevention, 26, p. 134.

                                                                                             

Figures 

The purpose of figures is to present visual information directly relevant to the content of the paper, especially information that would be hard to explain in written text. Data for the figure may be based on your own original research or on data from published sources.

A variety of figures can be used to clarify ideas:

  • Bar graphs
  • Line graphs
  • Charts (pie charts, flow charts, organizational charts)
  • Diagrams, maps and drawings
  • Photographs

Some general terms and strategies can be helpful when using figures:

  • When a paper contains both tables and figures, number each separately; e.g.: Table 1, Figure 1, Table 2
  • Figure number: Figures are numbered using Arabic numerals consecutively throughout the paper; e.g.: Figure 1, Figure 2, etc. Figure numbers are located below the figure in italicized text.
  • Figure caption: The caption should concisely describe the content of the figure. The caption is not italicized, appears after the figure number, with only the first word and proper nouns capitalized; e.g.: Reported cases of child abuse in Michigan, 2006.
  • Figures in APA are generally placed after the References page and tables, but before any appendices. Consult your instructor for preferred figure placement.

Refer to figures within the text of your paper. Provide a parenthetical insertion within the text of the paper at the point where you wish the reader to refer to the figure; e.g.: (see Figure 1).

If you are not using original data, a source citation must be included.

  

Example:

Figure for APA Format: Tables and Figures page.

Figure 1. Annual growth rate of electricity consumption per capita for selected countries between 1971 and 2001. Adapted from “Past, Present, and Future Status of Electricity in Turkey and the Share of Energy Sources,” by H. Ozturk, A. Yilanci, and O. Atalay, 2005, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 11, p. 187.