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We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

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American Psychological Association (APA) 7th Edition: Tables and Figures

In research, authors present tables and figures to share various forms of information. In tables, authors visually represent their data in an effective way through numeric values and textual descriptions. Figures typically share non-numeric information through charts, graphs, photographs, or other visual material that displays data or visuals. Tables and figures often draw the attention of readers, so they need to serve a purpose and not just be decorative. Moreover, tables and figures need to be accessible to all users, which requires attention to colour, contrast, and size (APA, 2020, section 7).

The main elements for formatting tables and figures are:

  • Table or figure number.
  • Table or figure title.
  • A body for tables or an image for figures.
  • Table or figure notes as necessary.

When creating tables and figures, many programs may be used (e.g., Excel, PowerPoint, MATLAB, etc.). It is best to use a program designed to format tables and figures because using the tab key or space bar may cause inconsistency in the alignment.

Referencing Tables and Figures (section 7.5)

When referencing tables and figures in the text of your paper, you must reference the table and figure by its number, which is known as a callout (see the APA 7th Edition Publication Manual, sections 7.5, 7.10. and 7.24 for more information). Following the table or figure callout, you should tell the reader why they should look at the table or figure. The following examples come from the APA 7th Edition Publication Manual (2020, pg. 197).

            As shown in Table 1, the demographic characteristics . . .

            Figure 2 shows the event-related potentials . . .

            . . . of the results of the testing (see Table 3).

            . . . of the comparisons (see Figure 4 and 7).

Placement of Tables and Figures (section 7.6)

One way to place a table or figure within the text of the paper is after a callout. When the table or figure is found within the text of the paper, it may take up a whole page or part of a page. If it only takes up part of page, place the table at the top or bottom of the page to allow for text on the page and leave one blank double-spaced line between the table or figure and the text.

Tables (sections 7.8 to 7.21)

Different kinds of information can be shared in tables, such as demographic information, correlation results, factor analysis, and more. When deciding to incorporate a table, you must determine if the table is integral to the paper as well as ensure that it is concise and can be understood without the surrounding text. The table should be able to stand alone and be understood by the reader.

As previously stated, tables must have the following components: number, title, headings, body, and notes.

  • The number of the table (i.e., Table 1) will appear first in bold font. Tables will be numbered in order of appearance within the paper.
  • The name of the table will appear on the next double-spaced line in italic title case. The title should be brief and descriptive.
  • Headings will be determined according to the data being presented, but most tables will have column headings and stub headings. A stub heading is the heading for the leftmost column of a table.
  • The body of the table includes all the columns and rows. The body of the table can be single-spaced, one-and-a-half-spaced, or double-spaced. The stub heading is left-aligned except the title, whereas the rest of the information in the table is centred.
  • Table notes can be classified in three types: general, specific, and probability. All notes will appear below the body of the table and describe information in the body as necessary to understand the data (i.e., definitions of abbreviations, asterisks explanations). It is important to note that not all tables need notes.

The design of tables is also important. Specifically, tables should use the same font as the rest of the paper. For tables, it is best to limit the borders or lines inside the table because they may disrupt the clarity of your data. In general, borders are found on the top and bottom of the table and beneath the column headings. Best practice is to use spacing between columns and rows rather than having vertical or horizontal borders around the table cells. 

For examples of APA 7th Edition Tables, check out the APA Style Blog.

 

Figures (sections 7.22 to 7.36)

When incorporating figures into your work, you have to think critically about their importance and whether the information is more suitably expressed in a table. For figures, the following standards must be met: 1) it is simple, 2) it is clear, 3) it has continuity, and 4) it holds information value. Figures need to be legible and easy to understand. They should only provide essential information, where the figure corresponds with the text information without restating it. Figures need to be visually attractive, but they should not distract the reader.

Figures must have the following components: number, title, image, legend, and notes.

  • The number of the figure (i.e., Figure 1) will appear first in bold font. Figures will be numbered in order of appearance within the paper.
  • The name of the figure will appear on the next double-spaced line in italic title case. The figure should be brief and descriptive.
  • The image is the visual information that you are presenting, such as a chart, graph, photograph, or illustration.
  • The legend or key is within the borders of the figure and explains symbols or colours used within the figure.
  • Figure notes can be classified in three types: general, specific, and probability. All notes will appear below the body of the figure and describe information in the figure that was not portrayed in the title, figure name, or legend (i.e., definitions of abbreviations). It is important to note that not all figures need notes.

For examples of APA 7th Edition Figures, check out the APA Style Blog.

 

Helpful Resources

References

American Psychological Association. (2019, September). Tables and figures. APA Style. https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/tables-figures

American Psychological Association [APA]. (2022). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th Edition.