APA Style Today: Introductions, Origins, and FAQs

Sponsored by APA Style

Recorded on 08/07/2023
Posted in The Authority File

Episode 339

APA Style originated in the early 20th century as a way to instruct American Psychological Association authors on proper paper formatting. Since then, APA Style has expanded to inform students and researchers on how to write clearly and concisely. Through tutorials, blog posts, and open feedback, APA Style works with the academic community to keep guidance up-to-date, inclusive, and coherent.

In this four-part series, Chelsea Lee, instructional lead, and Timothy McAdoo, manager, both of APA Style, address major referencing questions—the principles of references, popular myths, and guidance on citing unique sources like ChatGPT. They also discuss expanded guidelines on bias-free language and accessibility standards, such as headings, font type and sizing, and figures. Last, they cover popular questions in the last couple years—how do you cite TikTok anyway?—and how the APA Style team collects and sorts through the hundreds of questions submitted per month.

In this first episode, Tim and Chelsea introduce themselves and their roles at APA Style. They provide an overview of the style guide’s origins and major updates to the seventh edition of the Publication Manual. Last, they explain frequently asked questions from readers, and how the nature of the questions has evolved since the seventh edition’s release in 2019.

About the guests:

Chelsea Lee headshot

Chelsea Lee
Instructional Lead
APA Style

Chelsea Lee is the instructional lead, APA Style. She has worked at APA since 2007, beginning as a manuscript editor for APA Journals before moving to the then newly formed style team in 2015. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The College of William & Mary and a master’s degree in education and human development from The George Washington University. She has written for the APA Style blog since it began in 2009 and is occasionally recognized for her contributions by strangers in elevators. She helped shape the seventh edition of the Publication Manual, in particular, the new referencing system and bias-free language guidelines. She also works on all style-related content, including the learning materials for Academic Writer. She loves promoting a kind and conscientious approach to writing. She believes that people become better writers by becoming better thinkers, and that by becoming better thinkers, people become better people.

She has two young sons who bring both joy and perspective to life. She is also an avid swing dancer and swing dance teacher in a style called Balboa, a classical pianist, and a crossword puzzle enthusiast.

Timothy McAdoo headshot

Timothy McAdoo
APA Style

Timothy McAdoo is a manager on the APA Style team. He has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in writing. Timothy started his career at APA as a copyeditor in APA Journals, later becoming an APA Style training supervisor. More recently, in APA Books, Timothy worked with the Product Management team to create reference management tools in APA’s Academic Writer platform, and he helped shape the seventh editions of the Publication ManualConcise Guide to APA Style, and the Mastering APA Style Student Workbook. He also writes for and manages the APA Style blog and social media.

APA Style Resources:

Enjoy the conversation? Listen to the rest of the series:

Watch APA Style’s latest Choice-ACRL webinar, “What’s the Point of APA Style? Relevance of a Writing Style to Life After Graduation.”

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