Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (Anglais) Couverture à spirales – 31 juillet 2001
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This is not my favourite format for several reasons, not the least of which is because the footnote/endnote notations do not include first names of authors (a big minus in my estimation). However, the system is a tried-and-true one, and one that shows little sign of decreasing in popularity among its adherents.
That being said, this manual is not for the basic student or author. It does include sections on grammar and usage, but these are meant to be refreshers or references rather than teaching sections. The part that most people will use, the sections on citations in footnotes, endnotes, and in-line/in-text references, is somewhat inadequate here, as the internet and other forms of media have all expanded beyond the scope of the fifth edition. I find that, when I am forced to put something into the APA framework, I am invariably having to go to the internet rather than my guide (or other guides, such as Diana Hacker) because the reference forms simply aren't there.
My first choice of reference form would be the MLA style; APA is somewhat lacking and somewhat confusing in many cases, but for those who need to follow this format, this is one of the better references available.
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Also I recommend marking your book with tabs such as in the "Reference Citations in Text" section or the "Reference List" chapter. Marking the book with tabs helped me find my way to the information that I needed over and over again. I've tended to use the same type of references throughout my graduate courses.
I am not a psychologist, but I am a professional medical editor, and I feel sorry for those who must follow this style when writing theses, articles, book chapters, and other items for publication. In addition, I find some of the APA's requirements (particularly in the references, which have their own unique style quite unlike most others) incomprehensible.
That having been said, this book is a must for those who want to be published by the APA, and those who are editing for same. Once it has been read many times, and key passages put to memory, it is not as hard to understand--but it shouldn't be so hard. The section on figures and tables, however, is a truly excellent primer, for any professional writer, not just those in the health care professions.
My grade: C plus.
Now let's get to the trouble with this particular book. First, it is unnecessarily humungous, trying to beef up the very thin body of APA citation requirements (which by the way can be found for free all over the internet) with hugely unenlightening chapters on basic writing style and methods. Infinitely better guides on how to actually write and conduct research can be easily found elsewhere. Even when you do want to find instructions on the core requirements of APA citation style, this is an annoyingly difficult task in this atrociously organized and indexed book. A thin and under-compiled index sends you to hard-to-find section numbers rather than page numbers. And finally there is the practice of this book's publishers to promote a "new edition" which is merely the same as before with a couple of new entries, sold with a new cover and of course a new full price. In case you're wondering, about the only new information in this edition concerns how to reference websites and online publications. Once again, this info can be found for free on the internet, while you could also spend a pittance on a used copy of the supposedly "outdated" previous edition.
This book gets two stars because it is nominally useful (at least in theory) if you're stuck with it. But if you find yourself required to use the talent-crushing APA style in your attempts to write something of importance, first try to convince your mentors that APA is inherently anti-intellectual. Then find a way to get out of any requirements to buy this unhelpful book, and find the information on the internet instead. [~doomsdayer520~]
If you need to prepare manuscripts in APA style and don't have a previous edition of the manual, then you need this book. Though it remains relatively user-unfriendly, it is nonetheless the bible of manuscript preparation.
If you already have the fourth edition... determine how many of the changes in the fifth edition apply to your work. If you mostly write "plain vanilla" research reports and your reference lists mostly consist of ordinary journal articles, you may be able to get by with some handwritten notes in the margins of your old book.