Let’s begin with the first page of your research report – the title page. The most obvious function of this page is to label your work.
Your title page has many components including a running head in the top left-hand corner, which is a requirement when submitting work for publication, and is sometimes required by professors in student research reports.
The running head is a mini-title that you can insert as a “header” to the top-left of every page of your research report. According to the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (2020), it should be no more than 50 characters long, and appear IN ALL CAPS. If your title is already less than 50 characters you can include the entire title; if it is longer, provide a shortened version. For example:
Full title of report:
Social Modeling, Monetary Incentives and Pain Endurance: The Role of Self-Efficacy and Pain Perception
The running head helps to quickly identify your work and piece it back together in case the pages get dropped or another assignment gets mixed in with yours.
A page number should appear after your running head as part of the same header, aligned to the right of the page.
A title is used to convey the focus or underlying topic for your study. Try to create a title that gives the reader a sense of what the study is about (e.g., Affirmative Action is too vague while Affirmative Action Hiring Practices by RCMP Utilized to Reflect Community Diversity tells us what to anticipate in the actual study).
The full title is as many as 10 to 12 words long and appears in Bold Title Case, centered on the title page, about 4 double-spaced lines down from the top of the page.
The author line is one double-spaced line beneath the title. The author line includes your name and the names of anyone else who was directly involved with your research (e.g., if it was part of a group project with a group mark, you would include everyone’s names). Below this, note the institution your research is affiliated with (i.e., your school’s name).
Towards the bottom of the title page, centre the words Author Note in bold. If a research grant was used in any way to support your study (e.g., interview participants were compensated for their time, a software license was paid for by your program of study, or you applied for and received a travel grant to support a poster presentation of your findings at a conference), the source of the funding should be cited here on its own line.
Also, under the “Author Note” line, you need to include the name of a main contact person with an email address so that interested parties can correspond with that person for more information about the study. (Unless someone else headed up a group project that you participated in, you would put yourself down as the main contact person.)
Title Page Checklist
❏ On a separate, first page of your report
❏ Identifier title (“running head”) in the top-left hand corner IN ALL CAPS
❏ Page number in the top-right hand corner
❏ Full title in title case, centered, bold text, starting about 4 double-spaced lines down the page
❏ Author line a double-space down from the full title
❏ Institutional affiliation below the author line
❏ Funding source, if applicable, and corresponding author and contact information noted in an “Author Note” section near the bottom of the page.